I presume everyone has heard by now that Tiger Woods won a little golf tournament called the U.S. Open last month. Yawn. What’s another major championship for Tiger? What’s different with this one?
Well, he won this one without practicing. With a badly torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee. With a broken (in two places) tibia in the same leg. With the 100% knowledge that every time he drove the ball, his knee was going to scream with pain. With having to recover from horrible drives, caused by that knowledge, on nearly every hole. With having to walk the course not just the 4 regular times, but an entire extra round in the playoff. And all that on top of the usual Tiger stuff: having to prove that you’re the best in the world every single freakin’ week, etc. etc. (Been there, brother.)
Oh, and did I mention it was the U. S. OPEN!?!?!
There is the story (probably apocryphal, but good nonetheless) told by Tiger’s swing coach, that two weeks prior to the event, after the fractures to the tibia occurred, Tiger’s doctor told him he had to be totally off his feet for three weeks and on crutches for 6. Tiger’s calm reply was, “no, I’m going to play in the U.S. Open in two weeks, and I’m going to win it.” To invoke MythBusters’ Adam Savage, he rejects the doctor’s reality and substitutes his own.
The marketing story that is Tiger Woods is so powerful because the most important consumer of that story completely and wholeheartedly believes it – Tiger himself. I don’t want to get all Anthony Robbins on you, but the total belief that he can (and will) win is a big part of why he does.
When I worked at Maximizer, we made the best damn contact manager software there was. I didn’t just write marketing bumf to that effect, I absolutely KNEW it to be true. That’s why I could be so effective at convincing others that it was true. If you’re not 100% sure of your message, maybe you shouldn’t be telling it…