How would you describe what you do to your Grandmother?
It sounds like a ridiculous question - but when you’re creating content to promote your business, you need to think about how you’re speaking just as much as what you’re saying.
A lot of people feel like they’re supposed to use ‘marketing speak’ - and try to use lots of business phrases. They write content which sounds professional - all third person, scattered with thus and whereby, sincerely and formally, and hoping that this email finds you well.
The trouble is, that isn’t really how anyone speaks.
Have you ever watched one of those reality TV behind-the-scenes police shows? You know the ones; a traffic officer is filmed pulling over some dodgy driver, and then a quick search of the car finds a bit of weed or some stolen shoes to add to the list. The traffic officer then does a sit-down interview to camera, and suddenly stops speaking like a human and slides into peculiar police-speak; “the assailant was apprehended according to due process and was later discovered to be withholding illegal chemical products” and so on…
NOBODY speaks like that. Not anyone. Not even the police - though, for reasons they can’t explain, they still write up all of their reports that way...
When you read something promoting a business which is littered with hideous jargon like “significant benefits were discovered through blue sky thinking and appealing to professionals in the industry to which we are most closely aligned” you tune out - and so will your audience, if that’s how you try to communicate with them.
Why will they tune out?
Because it’s absolute nonsense - and it sounds shit.
So when you’re thinking about what you want to say, and drafting some copy to tell your customers and audience a little about a new product or service, or perhaps giving them some news about your business:
Write how you speak.
The only thing I change when I write for business (and it’s the same concession I make in meetings with clients) is I swear a bit less than I do with my friends. I’m very sweary - and that does slip into my meetings and my copy, from time to time - but I am careful to limit it some in professional settings!
Other than that, when you read things I create for my business (and for the businesses of my clients) it’s always written the way I (or the client) speak. That means that what you see digitally and in print is an accurate representation of what you’d get in person.
This means that my audience are getting to know the real me - and the audience my clients are sharing their content with are getting to know the real them. These are the relationships which lead to more business, more sales and better long-term working partnerships with your audience.
Knowing people leads to trusting them - and trusting them is why you’ll buy from them, time and time again.
So stop with all the jargon, all the ‘ourselves and yourselves’ and the weird distance between you and what you really want to say.
Instead, just imagine that you’ve got a new product or service to promote, and you’ve popped in to see your Nana. She wants to hear all about what you’ve been up to, but you know you need to explain it in language she understands.
This isn’t hard - you love your Nana, and you know exactly how to explain things in a way she understands.
You cut all the ‘blue sky thinking’ and ‘aligning our values industry standards’ and instead, you just speak simply, honestly and with the kind of language you actually use every day.
Your brand IS you. So stop trying to be something you’re not.
Being a copywriter means that my expertise isn’t just in creating copy which sells products and services - it means that, in writing, I can slide into being different characters and people.
It’s like acting, but as I type, rather than on stage; I get to know my clients, and I become them as I write - so that I am sharing their values, their language, their company ethos and their voice in the content I create on their behalf.
This means that they are building genuine relationships - because their target audience are reading their voice in the writing - and that voice is the same as the person they will meet face to face when their business relationship grows.
It’s a skill I’ve honed in many years of working in the industry, and it’s the part of my work I take the greatest pride in. Certainly, seeing the data and statistics which show an increase in engagement (and profits!) as a result of my marketing outreach feels great - but I know that only comes because I’ve been able to communicate as the client - and shared their messages in a way their clients trust.
If you’d like me to do this for you - to help you translate your ideas into words, to stop you getting in your own way with business speak and jargon, and to make you comfortable sharing your business with your audience, get in touch.
I love what I do - and I do it well. Let me do it for you.
Give me a call on 07580 676833 or email me on firstname.lastname@example.org and let's put together a plan.