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Dustin DeTorres By Dustin DeTorres • September 4, 2013

Jellyfish Proof vs Social Proof

On her 5th try, Diana Nyad just became the first person to swim from Cuba to Florida without the usage of a protective cage. Did you know that she was 64 years old!?

Her story is very emotional and one can’t help from loving her. For instance, on CBS This Morning Tuesday, Nyad said her mantra through the swim was “find a way.” On several other videos, she mentioned, “I was envisioning pushing Cuba away from me and pulling Florida towards me during most of my swim”. Her back-story about her her mother dying and the thoughts the had about achieving her ultimate goal were also very touching.

What really stood out to me was this horror movie-like jellyfish proof mask that she wore to prevent her from getting stung by jellyfish. I can see a new Meme or trend coming down the pipeline soon called “Nyading” or “Jellyfishing”. Heck, this Halloween we will probably see several Diana Nyad costumes.

So where does Social Proof come in? I’ll tell you.

#1: Her Age:

She’s 64 years old! How many of us that are half of her age get winded going to the refrigerator to get another coke? Just her age alone makes most of us feel guilty for not achieving something that physical in nature. The conversations surrounding her age are growing and bringing a true awareness that people at all ages can accomplish something as physical as swimming 110 miles. What I think you’ll see more of people in the middle ages entering these crazy obstacle races likeSpartan Race and Superhero Scramble so they can post pictures of themselves on social media to show how in shape you are.

#2: Her story:

Just like smart businesses that use customer anecdotes to sell product, Diana has sold herself to us all by telling us the story of her life. If she was only considered the “5th woman to swim and achieve this goal”, the memory of her and her achievement would surely fade away pretty fast. Studies have shown that individual stories tend to lodge themselves in our minds, but statistics and averages do not. Since shes like-able, we can relate her and basically every media outlet has ran a story on her…she won’t be forgotten.

In business, we have to create stories from our customers. The leads you’ve generated and people visiting your website would LOVE to see someone in a similar situation to themselves. They would love to see a story about what was happening before your solution and what’s happening now. They would love to see the story of your company and how you struggled to get to where you are today.

How about you create a like-able character to mimic your buyer personas. These can be your Diana Nyad that you use to connect with your customers or potential customer on an emotional level. You’ll be glad you did.

Dustin DeTorres