The biggest challenge in marketing is not budget, nor is it the reach-to-frequency rate. It’s the words we use, and how we go about using them.
Words matter. In fact, they matter tremendously.
The blog article you wrote yesterday. The product/service description on your website. That online ad you placed on Google.
People don’t read marketing copy in the same way that they used to. Email, web pages and pop-TV type soundbites have reduced all of our attention spans.
Instead, people scan your text to decide whether your message is actually worth reading. You’ve got a few seconds of their attention, so make it count.
Take websites as an example. Your site’s homepage is not the place to explain why you decided to open a business, what your passion is or the employment history of your management team. Don’t laugh – I’ve seen all of these, and much worse.
However, I’m not saying such information isn’t important to help customers make a buying decision.
That sort of stuff is invaluable in helping develop a feeling of affinity and trust with your business. They have their place in the hierarchical scheme of things, it’s just that place isn’t on your homepage.
Simplifying Messaging Is Hard
I think the reason more coaches, consultants and small businesses aren’t simplifying their marketing presentations is that simple is hard.
It seems to be far easier for organisations to hide behind fluff, rhetoric, and jargon than tell it like it is.
And that’s a shame.
Because customers are no longer tolerant of having to wade through reams of doublespeak. They know it no longer has to be that way. They’re fed up with being patronised, especially when customer-focused brands don’t make them feel small.
They judge their buying experience with you using the same yardstick as they do for the world’s biggest brands.
There seems to be a level of self-inflicted ignorance in many of our coaches, consultants and small business marketing materials. The common sentiment is that “we know better” or “we know what they really want”. In many cases we do, but in this area, I’d ask you to consider the reality that you don’t.
The path is set before you. Are you going to bow to the common language of your customers, or beat them senseless with your meaningless jargon?