Speak the same language as your customers
Many business owners are experts in their field. They have years of experience and could talk the leg off a chair about their product or service. However, their marketing messages can be hard to understand or bogged down with industry-specific terminology.
Don’t forget that your potential customers are not experts. They may not know a lot about your product and service and honestly, in many cases, don’t share your passion. That’s why you should step back, put yourself in the shoes of potential customers and ask “Are my marketing messages easy to understand? Do they motivate customers to purchase?”
Talk about the benefits
When interviewing business owners to write text for their websites, I notice many are quick to tell me all about the features of their products or services. That’s good, but it’s generally a carbon copy of what all their competitors are saying.
It’s only when I stop them in their tracks and ask them “Why do you do that?” or “What does that mean?” that they start to drill down and explain the benefits of their offering.
It’s this information that makes it onto their website. It’s this information that grabs people’s attention. It’s this information that can differentiate the product or service from the others. It’s this information that enables potential customers to understand “What’s in it for me”. It’s this information that motivates potential customers to call.
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Use terms they relate to
Talk to your customers in terms they relate, trust and respond to. Avoid overused words such as “quality” and “superior service.” These generic terms need statements of fact to back them up.
If you’re not sure what to say, simply ask existing customers why they use you. You should unearth a number of statements that will help you attract other like-minded customers. It might be something simple as “Your gift wrapping service is so elegant”. Bang! There’s your point of difference. Now, rather than saying “We provide superior service”, you can highlight something your competitors don’t do: “We professionally gift wrap for you.”
Not only have you provided a point of difference, you’ve spoken directly to your target market in a way that demonstrates to them that they’re going to get a better level of service than they would from your competitors. A simple statement like that could be the single deciding factor for customers choosing you over someone else.
Don’t assume it’s obvious
I recently did some consulting with a hairdresser who wanted to attract more customers. The salon looked great. It was modern, open, bright, funky and inviting. From the street you could see lots of salon product and stunning images of female models. Window signage simply featured their logo.
When I asked if they cut men’s hair, they replied that they did, but that not many men came into the salon.
I mustered up all my marketing experience, drew deep on my Masters of Marketing degree and suggested that perhaps they tell potential customers that they cut men’s hair by writing it on their window. “Oh yeah,” they replied. “Good idea!”
This simple action may potentially double their customer base.
Have you decluttered and clarified your marketing messages? What were the results?