It’s not as bad as stealing coins from a blind man or cheating on a test, but it ranks high in the thou-shalt-not-commit-marketing-sins category.
Ready? Here goes …
I’ve let an occasional hackneyed phrase remain in my content marketing, even though it made my teeth itch. The reasons are complicated, but let’s just say it was unavoidable. Mea culpa!
The truth is that it’s hard to be creative and compelling 24/7. When you’re digging for engaging content that converts – let’s say you’re writing about screws and toggle bolts for a living – well, you might resort to using “innovative” and “leading edge” out of desperation.
You’re better off leaving cringe-worthy hype in your back pocket, however. How many times will your audience read tired platitudes like “world class” and “robust solution” before they bail on you to call 1-800-KILL-CLICHÉ?
Clients and prospects don’t care that your products and services are “best of breed.” They want to know how you’re going to solve their problems. They want to know that you understand their businesses and their challenges and that you’re the right person for the job. Share success stories and results.
For example, nobody cares that your firm provides premier shipping services that meet exacting industry requirements. But people will pay attention if you guarantee 24-hour delivery for all packages.
It seems like a no-brainer and yet websites, email and direct marketing are appallingly full of generic drivel.
Here’s how to fix it: Ask “why” for every benefit you think you provide. Let’s say you’re a yoga instructor who offers classes for pregnant women.
Why do the women hire you? Why do they need a yoga instructor?
You might say it’s because yoga will help them relax. Why do they need to relax?
Because they’re expecting. Is that a sufficient reason to pay you for hourly classes when they could put that money toward their kids’ college funds. Nope!
Why would they want to give up an hour every week? Is it because they want to bend like a pretzel?
Maybe it’s because they want to experience less pain during delivery and prenatal yoga will help them do that. Or maybe they want a gentle way of de-stressing between diaper changes. Could it be because they want to regain their pre-pregnancy shape faster?
Try again. Why would women want to take prenatal yoga classes?
Maybe it’s because they need “me” time before their lives are completely disrupted.
Or maybe it’s so they can regain their pre-baby shape back faster.
Or maybe it’s because they want to make friends with other pregnant women so they have someone to lean on when they’re sleep-deprived and need adult conversation.
Focusing on the benefits that your prospects and customers really want – not superficial fluff – will help keep them coming back for more.
Does your marketing address your customers’ desires? How could your messaging be more persuasive? Let us know in the comments below.