(Note: This is a sample chapter from my recent book, Write Right-Sell Now. The Kindle version is now available! To celebrate, for a short time, the book is available for .99 cents.)
As a business owner and an industry expert, you have a great amount of knowledge, which becomes a key asset as you focus on becoming a resource for your customers and clients. How you go about communicating your expertise will go a long way in determining your success.
It’s easy to forget that your customers may not have the extensive background in your field that you do. It’s also easy to assume your readers know more than they do, which can lead to a knowledge gap. What does this look like as it’s practiced?
Maybe you throw in phrases your reader won’t understand. You may communicate ideas that make more sense in an industry journal than a communication to your customers. All of this can lead to a disengaged reader.
Keeping your readers’ engaged requires a simple adjustment to your mindset as you establish your marketing materials. Who are you trying to sell to? I know it’s tempting to answer, “Anyone who will buy.” But a general answer like that doesn’t help you in your endeavors. When you understand that you are trying to reach career-minded, college-graduate men between the ages of 30 and 45 with an average income of six figures, you can target your messages to the social media platforms the people in this demographic are most likely to use, the blogs they are likely to read, and the consumer goods they are most likely to be interested in. This helps you communicate in a way that resonates with your specific customers.
It can be helpful to come up with a profile for your target customer that includes career, family status, age, home, or any other specific information that may give you an indication of how to talk with them.
The most successful business owners are able to put themselves in someone else’s shoes, communicate to that person’s needs, and convince their audience that they offer the right solutions.
Building a successful business is not about you and how much you can sell. It’s about your reader and matching up what you offer to their needs. Your readers only give you a few seconds to see if your blog post or online content matches up with what they are looking for. It’s a small window and you have to do everything possible to keep it open.
Healing Your Customers’ Pain
Your main purpose in business is to heal your customers’ pain—to solve their problem. This is a key concept to keep in mind as you develop website content, a blogging strategy, general public relations, and brand messaging in the digital age.
What are the questions your customers continually ask? How does your product or service make your customers’ lives better? Your customers are conducting web searches right now to find out more about your industry. Are you the best-positioned business as the remedy to their pain point?
Keep this idea in mind as you blog. Make sure you understand what your readers are looking for so that you are marketing to them instead of at them. Nobody voluntarily spends his or her day reading ads. Potential customers are looking for an informative take on the industry or product.
You strengthen your business’s position when you are seen as the solution to the problem.
Matt Brennan is a Chicago-area marketing copywriter and copy editor. He is also the author of Write Right-Sell Now.