When I was at PDAC in March of 2020, I asked several exhibitors, Who writes your marketing material?
The answers were surprising. The most common answer? I don’t know.
- One of the engineers, I guess.
- Me. Last week.
- One of the IT guys probably.
As I looked over their marketing material, it looked quite professional. Very nice. Good design, professional photography, and quality paper. It looked nice. But is looking nice going to get more clients to buy your product or service?
The job of marketing material, either print or digital, is to get prospective clients to become clients. While design, colour, and images will attract people to the marketing material, it’s the words that will engage them. These words need to speak to prospective buyers and tell them how a product or service will help their business.
So, here’s a little test. Read your marketing copy out loud as if you were speaking to a prospective client. Get a co-worker or the dog to listen as you read it. How does it sound? If it’s like a lot of marketing copy, it’s stilted, full of clichés, industry jargon, and uses words you’d never say to a prospect in person.
I did this test with an exhibitor at PDAC. He didn’t get through the first line before he realized how awful it was. I don’t think he’s talking to me now.
But the point was made. If the words in the marketing material don’t connect with prospective buyers as if you were speaking to them in person, they will move on.
Explaining how your product or service works doesn’t sell it.
I can almost hear the conversation in the office. A team is assembled to write the marketing copy. “We need to tell them about this feature.” “Oh, and don’t forget to mention after-market service.” “We need them about our commitment to safety.” “We need to add our mission statement.”
In other words, the copy was all about them and how great they were.
It’s like going a social gathering and listening to someone go on and on about themselves. You feel as if you’re just there to agree with them about how great they are. You don’t feel as if you are part of the conversation. You’re being talked at. You begin to look for an excuse to leave.
I’ve had a few business owners tell me, somewhat indignantly, that they know how to write. I’m very sure they do. They are, after all, professional people with post-secondary education. I’m sure the sales people, IT people and engineers know how the write, as well. .
But writing effective marketing copy is not the same as writing academic papers or reports.
Your marketing copy must start a conversation with prospects. So first you must know your target market and their problems.
Through your marketing copy you tell them how you can solve their problems.
The words you use and the tone you take in your marketing copy will determine the success of your product or service.
You start by showing that you understand their problem and how your product or service will help solve that problem.
It must sound as if you are genuinely interested in helping them.
With marketing copy, you want to start a conversation with prospects. You start that discussion by showing that you understand their problem and show how your product or service will help solve that problem. Then you show how your product or service will solve that problem. How would you feel if you had a problem in your business and you found someone who understood your problem and had a solution? I bet you’d be relieved.
The words you use and the tone you take in your marketing copy will determine the success of your product or service. Don’t let the marketing copy be an after thought to the design. People communication using words. They are important.
Need help with your marketing copy? Let’s talk. Email me at email@example.com
You can check out my website at https://janiceleuschen.com\
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