This is one of the big ones that really kills websites. In fact, it kills entire marketing campaigns. When your marketing is all about you and doesn’t relate to your target market, you have a serious communication problem ahead of you and will very quickly find that you’ve been tuned out.
Anytime you are presenting a message to a prospect, you need to make sure you are speaking to them and their needs. They don’t care who you are or what you do until they understand that you can solve a problem they have or can make their life better in some way or another. “What’s in it for me” is what they want to know first, not who you are or what you do.
The beauty of it is that once you’ve proven that what you have is something they want, once you’ve identified a pain they have and a solution you have that solves that… they will seek out information about you.
Here’s a great example with a simple marketing piece we did recently to help let all the fine people of Melbourne know we are their web design company of choice. Our brochure is a simple, yet creative, square trifold piece. The interesting thing about it is that it does NOT do what most brochures do, which is to spend the majority of the time talking about our company. What I’ve learned is that no one really cares about me and my company until they realize we have something of value to offer them… then once they see a big enough benefit, they seek out the rest of the information.
The brochure copy (or content) is Them-Centric instead of Me-Centric.
Let’s define the differences real quick: Them-Centric copy focuses on keeping “them”, your target demographic, your prospective client or customer, as the center. When you put the client first, they take notice faster and you keep their attention longer. When you write Me-Centric copy, you and your business is the center, which doesn’t have as much attention-holding power.
Back to the brochure… we start the process of identifying with the prospect without selling them anything. We have our brand and logo on the cover with the simple slogan “You are awesome at what you do. Ready for a website just as awesome?” We have not said we build websites, but we have implied it… we’ve also implied they are awesome and people like being awesome. Come on, who doesn’t like being awesome… admit it, you like being awesome.
So now they flip it open and they see two things. On the left is a statement that starts getting them thinking about how a website can help them: “Imagine what would happen if your business had an awesome WordPress website that generated leads, created conversions and made people want to share it.” That page also contains two testimonials from some of our favorite clients. On the right, which is the inner flap, is a letter from me briefly talking about who we are.
Everyone that flips through our brochure, without exception, skips that inner flap and immediately opens the brochure all the way to reveal the last two pages which lead the reader down the path of wanting a website, without ever saying “hey we sell websites!” In fact, we don’t say that we build websites anywhere in the brochure except for briefly in the letter from me.
The center page says “Now imagine that website also impressed your visitors and incited them to take action with a crisp modern design.”
And the final page says “It would be huge for your business, wouldn’t it?” and provides our phone number and website nice and big. Samples of our work are also shown on this page.
The cool thing is this… once they read the rest of the inside, without fail, they always go back and read that flap with the letter from me about who we are! Once they realize we have something cool to offer, they instantly care who we are! It’s pretty cool to watch it happen consistently.
We do this on our website as well, in fact, we use the same copy along with some handy call to actions to drive visitors to the pages where we will convert them.
It’s the same with you and your company. Your job isn’t necessarily to communicate who you are as much as it is to communicate how you relate to your prospect, how you have a solution that meets their needs, their pains. Once you connect with them, they will look for more information about you.
Being Them-Centric on your home page is absolutely paramount because that’s when you need to prove the most that your website is worthy of their time.
“Marketing isn’t about you at all, it’s about your prospect” is something I’ve often said to my clients in consultation sessions. We have to stop treating our marketing as if it is being designed for us. Speak to your prospect.
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