Expert Rub Off

by Lou

What kind of a guru are you, anyway?
~ ‘Cosmik Debris‘, Frank Zappa

How would you like instant credibility? How would you like to take your learnings and have the people who taught you these learnings endorse you, even if you’ve never met them. . . even if they’re no longer with us?

It all works with a simple language pattern and the meme that comes attached to famous experts. The great thing about this NLP language pattern is that you never had to meet your expert personally, just what you’ve learned from a book, video, or seminar from them (unless of course you have met them and they did actually tell you to your face, all the better).

But for those of us less fortunate to meet these great people face-to-face, here’s the pattern you can use.

It works especially well in personal communications like sales letters, emails, or opt-in reports where you’d normally use the first person.

The covert expert endorsement goes like this:

“One thing I learned from (EXPERT’S NAME) was/is (WHAT YOU LEARNED FROM HIM/HER).”


“If there was/were one thing that (EXPERT’S NAME) taught me, it’s this: (WHAT YOU LEARNED).”


“One thing I learned from Steve Jobs is always innovate, never stagnate. “

“If there was one thing that David Olgivy taught me, it’s this: always make your ads interesting. You can never bore people into buying from you.”

There are a couple of common-sense caveats that go with this language pattern: the first is make sure what you say is relevant to what your prospects want. For example, if you were selling cars, it would be pretty useless to say something like, “Well, if there was one thing that Vidal Sassoon taught me, it’s this: be a perfectionist.” Much better for a car seller would be this, “Well, if there was one thing that Lee Iacocca taught me, it’s this: be a perfectionist.”

The second caveat is to make sure the expert who taught you something is still alive or passed away recently (say, within the past twenty years). If I tell you, “One thing I learned from Abraham Lincoln was always be honest.” It loses its impact more than if I said, “One thing I learned from Jimmy Carter was always be honest.”

See/hear/feel the difference? The first one implies that you’ve got the information second-hand. The second one implies that you actually talked to Jimmy Carter.

Well, one thing Ben Franklin taught me is, “time is money.” So, let me finish this post and get back to work.


Comments are closed.

Previous post:

Next post: