With one small thing, Donald Trump can improve his already remarkable ratings by 5 - 10 points and pave the way for being seriously considered as a serious presidential contender.
"The Donald" has virtually every communication quality that I coach candidates around the world to have . . . with the glaring exception of one.
And it was the main deficit that doomed Sarah Palin in the general and the main advantage that is now causing Dr. Ben Carson to rise.
Here are "The 5 Things" that Donald Trump does better than anyone else running today, and better than most candidates in US history.
1. Trump is brilliantly conversational. The best I've ever seen in a political campaign, and this is a huge advantage. People listen differently, and more, when a candidate speaks in a conversational tone.
2. Trump speaks in what I call "Lasered, Compelling Messages." These are headlines that turn a potentially boring topic (border fences) into a provocative and powerful theme ("We have to build a really big fence . . . and Mexico is going to pay for it!"). Very few politicians have the ability, the confidence, and also the naivete, to do this in the way Donald does.
3. Trump is phenomenal at communicating The Big Picture. This excites the "Visual" part of all voters' brains, shows vision, gives voters comfort and is quite rare.
4. Trump knows how to tell and use stories -- relatable, interesting, human, "behind the scenes" stories that almost no one can not listen to, understand or enjoy. Storytelling is THE art of public communicating and The Donald leverages it brilliantly.
5. Trump, in stark contrast to all but Bernie Sanders and, to a somewhat lesser degree, Ben Carson, brings in the absolutely critical "Authentic Passion." Emotion is what stirs audiences and "Authenticity" is even more important. Even if every word out of Donald's mouth is thought to be unrealistic or even crazy, the fact that Donald authentically believes it, and is passionate about it, is like catnip to almost every human being. It is what voters crave from all candidates, yet most candidates -- throughout history -- have somehow not gotten that memo. Add a dose of this to the Democratic front-runner, especially the "Authenticity" part, and her poll numbers would soar. Guaranteed.
But, despite Donald's 5 great attributes, it is literally IMPOSSIBLE, psychologically and even neurologically, to be taken seriously, by all people, as a major political candidate without one more piece.
It is what we call in Neuro Linguistic Programming, (NLP) the "Auditory Digital" aspect of communication. It is a special sub-part of the "Auditory" mode of the human brain and it is the Albert Einstein, fact, detail, analytical part that is generally appreciated by voters but absolutely essential to the "Auditory Digital Types" (highly educated, professional, scientific, mathematical, legal, financial types who also wanted, really wanted to know what books or newspapers Sarah Palin did in fact read).
Dr. Ben Carson, a heroic neurosurgeon, clearly has -- in his own brain -- a terrific capacity for this kind of detail orientation and that gives him a level of credibility and trust that he can handle the intellectual demands of the highest office in the land, even though he has never yet held ANY office. This is why -- in response to Trump -- we see Carson rising. Add some of Trumps 5 positives attributes and Ben Carson could be unbeatable.
I am not suggesting that Trump go into excruciating detail about his plans. No clever candidate, especially at this point, would ever do that. But by:
a) simply citing a real statistic, the names of obscure world leaders, some studies or books that he has read, here or there, and when relevant
b) giving more specificity on simple things (the exact height and precise building materials of his famous wall, for example)
c) citing historic examples to show that he has an intellectual grasp of history (when, for example, other countries, even centuries ago, might have, indeed, agreed to pay for security infrastructure to keep their people in).
If The Donald did these 3 things, or even any of them well, he would communicate that he does have the all-essential "Auditory Digital" part of his brain and forever change the nagging perception that he is not substantive enough to be President of The United States.
It's really that simple. The ROI on working to develop this one aspect of one's communication - for celebrities, business leaders and especially politicians - is as big or bigger than any one thing in public communication. Even a tiny bit of it goes a really long way.
And with all of his bluster, confidence, money and considerable communication talents Donald Trump already has, adding this substantive missing piece could very likely land him as the nominee of The Republican Party for President of The United States . . . and possibly even into The White House!
Richard Greene has coached Presidents, Prime Ministers, Governors, Senators, Congresspersons, Mayors, Royalty and CEOs in 45 countries around the world and is currently coaching major candidates in two countries. Richard@WordsThatShookTheWorld.com