Inner Game

The Whole Package: Two Critical Concepts to Fully Support Your Tribe

When we buy, we buy with emotion. Our hearts tell us we want something, that we need this item, and that we deserve it.

Then our brains jump into the conversation and determine the outcome with logic. If the mind sees a benefit, we say yes. But if the brain doesn’t think the investment is a good idea, we’ll likely turn the opportunity down. Or we’ll make the purchase, feel guilty later and return it.

When your heart and mind agree on the value you’ll get from something, you’ll buy the product or service every time.

When your heart and mind agree

Your heart is programmed to look for a transformational benefit: something to make you into the person you’ve always wanted to be. Your brain is looking for a transactional promise: calculating the immediate, tangible use you’ll get out of something and its return on investment.

When your heart and your mind align in an area you’re passionate about, you’ve found the one square inch where you can dig a mile deep and really deliver to your tribe.

In previous articles, I’ve discussed how your wound patterns have created a training program for your Life Ph.D. But this is where your tribe needs you and you alone. No one else can generate the kind of value you’re capable of.

To be effective, you can’t just provide one part of the equation. If you’re only giving them a transformational benefit or a transactional promise, you’ll always fall short of your potential.

What a successful partnership looks like

Let’s say your industry is weight loss coaching and your tribe is people who have suffered from sexual abuse.

You can provide truly revolutionary dieting and exercise training to help your clients drop weight faster than they ever thought possible. But if that’s all you do, you’ll fail to effectively reach your tribe.

As clients slim down, they begin to notice people are looking at them more and responding to their physical attractiveness. This might terrify them. At a subconscious level, they hid behind their weight to ward off attention.

Your clients panic, jump straight back into overeating and quickly regain all their weight.

If, however, you addressed their psychological need for safety first, changing the way they relate to their body, to sexuality and to relationships, then you created an environment allowing them to lose weight and be ok with it.

You recognized the need to move their mindset from self-loathing to self-nurturing. This might include lessons about something like boundary setting within personal relationships. These are seemingly unrelated concepts, but your Life P.hD. has prepared you to identify the core of what your tribe needs.

The transformational benefit is changing the mindset that caused them to gain weight. The transactional promise is weight loss.

Transformational benefit and transactional promise

Perhaps your profession involves getting out of debt, but you know from your wound patterns the people who comprise your tribe actually fear becoming financially independent.

They have a betrayal pattern, and every time they achieved success in their life, a close friend or relative used them for their position. Their life experiences taught them to correlate financial well-being with failing personal relationships.

Subconsciously, they’ve decided financial independence just isn’t worth the price.

You can offer all the budget management tools, investment strategies and additional income opportunities in the world, but those won’t create transformational change. Just as soon as they see some progress, they’ll slide right back into their old behaviors.

Your tribe needs to understand what healthy relationship dynamics look like. They need to recognize toxic people who will use them and learn how to build strong friendships, stable romantic relationships and safe business partnerships.

When they’ve learned to structure relationships built on trust, eliminating debt and creating a strong financial future will come easily — and the lessons will stick.

How to set yourself apart

Marketing should start with the transactional promise because it addresses your tribe’s public problem. These are things they know about, have pain around and are willing to spend money to solve.

Most people are unaware of the deeper emotional realities driving their conscious behaviors, so marketing to that part of a person can be difficult.

Your tribe knows they need to lose weight or eliminate debt. What they might not know is why they accumulated those burdens in the first place.

Think about transformational benefits like the sidecar on an old motorcycle. The sidecar can’t be uncoupled from the bike and still work. The two need to be together. The transactional promise carries the transformation along and, together, they allow your clients to benefit in ways they never imagined.

Your wound patterns and life story put you in a perfect situation to be sensitive to the needs of your tribe.

If you limit yourself to the transactional promise without digging into the transformational benefit, you will be overwhelmed with the competition, and you’ll never feel true fulfillment.

Make peace with your own wound patterns and leverage them to help your tribe in the way only you can. You become irreplaceable. And you’ll find more satisfaction in your work than ever before.

About the Author


Jeffrey Van Dyk is the creator of the Tribal Marketing System: a revolutionary body of work that helps service-based business professionals identify precisely who their unique “tribe” is.

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