Keep Your Reader in Focus While Writing Web Copy

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One of the biggest faux pas I see business websites do is talking about themselves or their products or services. Big mistake. let me be brutally honest here. Visitors don't care about your company, your products or your services. What they care about is their problem.

Yes, you need to tell them how you can solve their problem but first you must make sure they understand that you understand their problem.

What have you done for me lately?

People are only interested in themselves and their problems. They didn't come to your site because they want to learn about your firm or your product or service. They came to your site to learn how you can solve their problem.

Find a way to answer your customer's inner need.

When you walk into a car dealership, if you get a good salesperson, the first thing they try to find out is not what kind of car you're looking for. They try to find out what your motivation is for vehicle shopping. In other words, instead of trying to tell them all about the vehicles on the lot, they try to find out why you're here in the first place so they can help you solve your transportation problem.

Talk to your best salesperson

How does any good salesperson find out the customer's motivation? in fact, when was the last time you sat down with your best salesperson and found out how they approach their potential customers or clients? What questions do they ask? What suggestions do they make? The best thing you could do is put a recorder in your best salespersons pocket for a week and then listen to it. Use the essence of what they say to clients for your website copy.

B to B is no different

Think your business customer is hard-nosed and practical and won't listen to that kind of drivel? Think again. People make emotional decisions and then justify them with logic. What are they really looking for? What's driving them? Security? Greed? Do they want to save time? Why? To spend more time with family? To spend more time fishing? To spend more time building their business?

Talk to your clients and customers

This kind of analysis takes time, reflection, and a willingness to talk to your customers to find out what really motivates them. It's amazing to me how many clients I've talked to that have never asked their customers:

  • What would improve our service or product?
  • Why do you shop with us?
  • What would improve your experience?
  • What do you like about us?
  • What do you dislike about us?
  • Have you visited our website?
  • What would make it better for you?
  • What do you need from us that you're not getting from us?
  • Tell us a little about yourself. (It's hard to sell to someone if you don't know who they are)

Yes, it can be scary and even a little humiliating talking to your customers honestly. But it's the most effective method of optimizing your product line, your marketing, your web site and your web copy that I know of.

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