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October 02, 2009


Kelly Watson | Womenwise Marketing

"When I do training or consulting on marketing to women, I no longer assume that everyone agrees that men and women are different."

Ooh, I do that all the time. But does that mean that you now have to support that idea with facts so you can arrive at an enthymeme, or do you have to start with an enthymeme and work your way to that point?

Trying to digest this new word :)


Hey, Holly,

Since you called me out by name, I'll have to prove my geek cred by disagreeing on your use of terms ; )

What you are talking about is a COMMONPLACE, which is something that your audience already assumes or agrees to be true. An ENTHYMEME is a Syllogism wherein one of the parts - usually one of the premises - isn't stated but is assumed away as a commonplace. A good example of this is a recent political video I saw against Obama's proposed healthcare reform. The enthymeme the video used went something like this:

"Government run systems provide service like the DMV
Therefore, if the government gets involved with or takes over healthcare, you will end up receiving DMV-style healthcare."

The assumed premise or commonplace in this instance was that the DMV provides shitty customer service. The advantage of the enthymeme is that an uncritical audience won't think to challenge the assumed commonplace, and will end up debating the stated premise instead. The danger is exactly what you dealt with in this post: that trying to use a commonplace which isn't mutually agreed upon will make your argument fall flat - a critical point indeed, which is why this is still a great post.

- Jeff

Holly Buchanan

Jeff - This is what I get for calling out a former English teacher:) So an enthymeme isn't stated, but is implied. Got it.

But, yes, implied or not - if you think something is commonplace and the other party does not, you're in trouble.

Kelly -
enthymeme or commonplace - you have to start with something both sides agree on.

I realized, the hard way, that some people think there is not difference in how men and women respond to ads. They think there is no real difference in their buying process. So you have to keep going back until you find something they do agree with you.

For me, I can usually get that agreement when I share a shopping scenario that everyone can agree on. I share true stories of husbands and wives shopping together. Most people relate to these stories and believe they are true because they've seen the same thing in their own lives and marriages.

From there, I can take that story that they agree with,and deconstruct what she did (which they agree with) and start to explain why she did it - that's when you bring in your facts and figures and supporting argument - when you explain the "why" after they have agreed on the "what"

You'd think that if you have good supporting evidence, facts and research, that people would have to agree with your logic. But that's just not how the brain works. Our brains work overtime to filter information and allow in information we agree with, but not information we don't agree with. (for more on this - read The Political Brain - a fabulous book).

Website Design

Thanks for the lovely post.It's always wise to focus on the presentation.Thanks for tabulating your points so beautifully.

Kelly Watson

This is really interesting -- thanks for the clarification!

Papers on Research

looks quite a great post, it's having good information for research analysis. great job


Hey, Thanks for those great points. :)

Mary Schmidt

Oy BOY! A new word for word geek me.

Here's an even more common issue. Assuming your customer agress with you that they even have a problem (before you ever get to the pitch where you solve it.)

However, that said, at some point you have to go where you're wanted. If you spend all your time trying to find something(anything)on which you can agree - you may never close the deal (a little ol' thing like qualifying your target market.)

Mal Watlington

Holly - This is a really solid post. It should be required reading for Marketing 101 (or Advertising 101) students, and more importantly for those who (eventually) may employ them.



This is an excellent post and I really like it very much.I have learned so much from this post.That knowledge about enthymeme is very good.Thank you very much for giving such a good knowledge.


This is both setret smart and intelligent.


stop posting lies می‌گه:لیلی پورزند: پدرم خودکشی کرده استلیلی پورزند فرزند سیامک پورزند می‌گوید پدرش خود را از طبقه ۶ ساختمان محل سکونت‌اش به پایین پرتاب کردهاست. به گفته لیلی پورزند، پدرش ۱۱ سال زیر abفشار و ناعدالتی جانکاهbb قرار داشت.Why do you post LIES? She is the datuhger of Mehrangis Kar who received an award from Laura Bush assistant to G. Bush, a war criminal, to kill more people in Afghanistan. Kar family is at the service of the intelligent services of the West. Her datuhger, from Pourzand first wife, Banafshe, isworking closely with the necon like Michael Ledeen. Don't you know?


Good for you to have marketed so ptierstsnely!It's especially smart to co-market with other non-competitors, like having the coffee shop hand out your coupons and vice versa.The key to survival is repeat sales to existing customers, as I'm sure you learned.And the key to repeat sales is to capture the name and mailing address of every person who walks in your store, whether it's bricks-and-mortar or online. Then, mail them every month, at minimum, with special discounts, invitations to upcoming events, continuity (Book of The Month for $19.95/month), etc.Any business that doesn't capture and use contact info from prospects and customers is like one of those kiosk carts in the mall that's enslaved to foot traffic. They don't last long.

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