You seem to be great at what you do. You have a terrific product. Your media coverage has been impressive. You’ve been serving the industry for decades.
But, what does it mean to your customers? What’s in it for me?
Yes, all those points about your business are important. And, they’re certainly worth sharing. But, they each have a time and place. That time is not at the beginning of our conversation. That place is not at the top of your home page.
What I care about is how you solve my problem. Do you even know my problem? Do you know me?
You see, I can’t answer any of those questions if I’m reading only about you.
Keep in mind that I’m here because I’m needy. I need to feel an emotional — maybe even empathetic — connection in your message. I need to know that you understand me, my pain points and what keeps me up at night. And I need to believe that you can make my life easier.
I’m not getting it from, “We do this” and “We do that.”
Sure, we’ll eventually get around to you. But, we’ll never get there without first talking about me. So, for now, it’s all about me.
If your product does XYZ, why should it matter to me? What will I gain from it? What are my long-term benefits that transcend what you’re selling?
How should I view you differently than I view your competitors? If you’re offering widgets I can get just about anywhere, what do you bring to the table that adds extra value? (Here’s a tip: It’s not always about the price.) I might be willing to pay more for that little extra peace of mind. In fact, I might even pay a premium.
But, there’s more to it than that. Your marketing should engage me and make me want to learn more. If I find I’m learning from you, instead of just about you, my comfort level goes way up. And, I’m much more inclined to jump into your sales funnel.
I’d also like to hear your voice, not just read your words. Instead of dry product or service descriptions, how about some personality in your marketing? If you’re excited about what you do, I should feel it coming through in your message and graphics. I could use some excitement. Remember, I’m looking for help. Let’s have a real conversation.
Oh, and those contact forms? Way too long.
We often get too close to our business to see it the way others do. We build a virtual bubble around ourselves and lose the perspective needed to make sound strategic decisions.
When you meet new prospects, network or attend industry events, the moment you hand out your business card, your credibility will be on the line. If you’ve taken a long time to build a first-rate reputation, don’t let a second-rate website undo it.
While I was enjoying a great pastime, I was also learning about the power of human potential. I discovered how greatness can be achieved through sheer will or by overcoming the challenges of unforeseen circumstances.
If your business is like ours, you don’t have a bottomless marketing budget to build awareness of a name that lacks clarity. We have to be more calculated and deliberate.
Common clichés, tired sales pitches and unrealistic claims no longer work. In fact, they’ll likely be viewed as disingenuous and undermine your marketing efforts. Here, we’ve outlined five ineffective marketing messages and what you can do to avoid using them.
In order to be an effective marketer, it’s imperative that we continually remind ourselves of the true value we bring to our markets. Usually, that customer benefit is intangible. Quite often, we learn that it’s an emotional one.
Even if you’ve been able to put a check mark next to that spanking-new website on your marketing to-do list, get out your eraser. Your work has only just begun. A successful website is never once-and-done.
Evolving technology keeps all of us on our collective toes, makes us more aware of our competitors and presents more opportunities to distinguish ourselves than ever before. Moreover, it adversely impacts those who fail to embrace it.
Your circle of influence should not be confined to your immediate sales prospects. That’s not what marketing in the 21st Century is about.