Why You Fail: A Disconnect Between Belief & Behavior

By Stevie Sleeter, Content & Social Media Manager

Published: December 1, 2014


Companies across the world have one problem in common. They are tasked to change the beliefs of consumers in favor of their brand or product. Changing beliefs is an almost impossible hill to climb. But changing behavior, that’s relatively easy in comparison.

But, the link between the two — belief and behavior — is an important one to understand before trying to affect any change. You may even find that your own disconnect between belief and behavior in your current role is holding you back from true success and tangible results.

Belief: an acceptance that a statement is true.

Behavior: the way in which one acts or conducts oneself.

It is said by some that we are the sum total of all of our experiences. Multiple experiences lead to beliefs. The intensity of each experience results in beliefs of varying strengths. The repetition of the same experiences also strengthen the beliefs. Values are more accurately defined as “that which you value.” Your experiences lead to beliefs which cluster together into your values (that which you value).

Beliefs beget values beget attitudes (or why you do things), which in turn influences your behavior.

The Disconnect

Beliefs tend to be deep rooted and based on your experiences. Therefore, beliefs help to shape your reality. It’s clear that beliefs can control your actions, behavior and potential. If you learned how to acquire positive beliefs and how to get rid of negative ones then you will be able to use the tremendous power of beliefs on your side.

The Problem In Interactive Business

It’s simple: fear of change.

Humans innately don’t like to make the effort to change our attitudes or beliefs, particularly if they are deep seeded. In fact, we’d rather go out of our way to prove that our belief is right than to change it. Think about some of the beliefs you have about popular brands. You’ve probably had them for a long time. Maybe you prefer American-made cars to imports. Perhaps you’re a Coke person, not Pepsi. Maybe you always buy Apple and refuse to buy anything Microsoft. Can those beliefs be changed? Doubtful, at least not overnight. But can your behavior be changed? Yes.

The same is true when it comes to interactive. Those of you who spend a lot of time on the web, know that things change by the minute. If you thought it was bad for customer, imagine the impact that a shifting landscape and changes in digital tools has on businesses.

Your belief that social media is a viable strategy that impacts sales may be low. But your behavior, and your ability to test things, adapt, and learn is easily changed. As long as you have a belief that constant innovation is valuable — let your behavior follow, even if it doesn’t match other beliefs at the moment.

Ready to bridge the divide? Let’s chat!