Communicate Well To Build Your Information Marketing Business
I’m always fascinated by urban rumors that spring up and then persist, even in academic and business environments. Why? Because they sound good, and because they can be used to prove a point. It’s no secret that you have to communicate well to build your information marketing business, rumors or no rumors.
One excellent example of a rumor that has become an urban legend is Professor Albert Mehrabian’s famous 7% rule. I’d be willing to be that you’ve heard of it, and it goes like this – “Communication is only 7% verbal and 93% non-verbal.” Meaning, body language and voice inflexion reveal far more than our choice of words.
This article on public speaking tells the story of the actual research that led to the urban rumor:
“In the 1960s Professor Albert Mehrabian and colleagues at the University of California, Los Angles (UCLA), conducted [ 2] studies into human communication patterns. When their results were published in professional journals in 1967, they were widely circulated in the mass media in abbreviated form. Because the figures were so easy to remember, most people forgot about what they really meant. Hence, the myth that communication is only 7% verbal and 93% non-verbal was born. ..
The non-verbal component was made up of body language (55%) and tone of voice (38%).”
Statistics are so often misunderstood when they are taken out of context. The context of Mehrabian’s two studies was an attempt to see if non-verbal clues help with unclear communication. It was not related to normal communication.
“Prof. Mehrabian’s conclusion was that for inconsistent or contradictory communications, body language and tonality may be more accurate indicators of meaning and emotions than the words themselves. “
My take on this is that our body language and tone of voice can add or detract from our content, especially in audio and video information products, but they certainly do not replace the words we use to express information and to motivate people.