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.
Nobody is an expert at everything. Nobody. At one time or another, we all find ourselves forced into situations outside of our sweet spot. That’s why it’s important to rely on the expertise of others to help you make educated decisions and get the job done right.
Those who can harness the benefits of new technology without losing sight of the basics, like branding, creativity and targeted outreach, will be poised for greater success than those who find contentment with what they consider, “Good enough.”
Isolating yourself in a bubble of self-adulation might make you feel good. But, it doesn’t get you anywhere and, worse yet, it prevents you from uncovering opportunities to distinguish your business from the competition.
Don’t claim to be what you’re not. Embrace what you are, what makes you great and why that should be important to your audience.
Emulating your competition projects a sense that you belong. But, ultimately, your offering will only succeed if you can effectively distinguish it from the other guys. And keep doing so.
Sure, “all about you” is important. And you may be the one of best there is. But, when you promote your business, you’ll be better served if you save the best (you) for last.
Yes, watching the ads is great fun. Especially to us in the biz. And some of them do set new creative trends. But, what’s the real purpose? Is it to outdo the others? To get the industry awards? The most post-game buzz?
While it’s important that you not let your sales team dictate your promotional strategy, their influence cannot be underestimated. After all, they’re the ones out in the trenches day after day with their collective fingers on the market pulse more than anyone within the confines of the home office.
Consistency, frequency and, of course, clarity are each critical to having your value statement penetrate the marketplace and gain traction. And, without traction, you cannot build momentum.