Use your own words instead of the examples in the brackets to help craft a message that clearly describes your business to potential customers. It will also help you keep your marketing efforts on track so refer to it often.
What this tool does is simple, it clarifies 3 important things that a potential customer wants to know to help them decide if your business is what they’re looking for.
– What you do – Who you do it for – What they can expect
You can use it in your social media profiles and your website homepage so people know right away whether they’re in the right place for what they’re looking for. I’d even write it on a post-it note and have it on your laptop while you work!
I (cut hair/perform healing/give people a workout) for people (with disabilities/stuck at home/suffering trauma) who want to feel (more confident / happier within themselves / flexible and fitter)
For me, using this website as an example. I would write:
I provide resources for people with a small businesswho want to feel more confident with marketing.
If you have a small business and are struggling with marketing then you know you’re in the right place! Hopefully you’ll spend a bit more time looking at what I have to say rather than scrolling away.
If my message doesn’t apply to you, that’s fine too.. I won’t waste your time and you can keep looking to find what you’re after.
It might take a few goes before it feels right. Once it does, use it as it is, or get more creative with it!
Use your unique message on your homepage so visitors know straight away if they’ve landed in the right place!
You don’t need to pay for a website anymore, nowadays there are plenty of companies offering an online presence for free.
Below I list some of the better known, but an online search will reveal many more. Just be aware that free websites will often display ads on your pages and premium features such as connecting to your domain will require paid upgrades. As with anything, always read the small print before signing up, there may be other conditions that need to be met.
If you’re thinking about having a website, but something is holding you back, this is a great way to start. At the very least, you can experiment with how you want your business to show up online.
Please don’t fall into the trap that I’ve seen too many times over the decades I’ve been making websites for people. The expression If you build it, he will come is a great line but it does not apply to websites.
A website without any promotion will do nothing but sit quietly in the vast aether, gathering virtual dust. Yes it’s exciting to have a website, and it can help you grow your business, but don’t book your holiday to the Bahamas just yet 🖤
I recently listened to a podcast where Jay Shetty (author, entrepreneur and former monk) gave advice on how to find your purpose. I’ve heard dozens of opinions on this but his resonated with me because it was simple, and I LOVE simple.
This isn’t verbatim because I can’t remember exactly how he worded it, but here’s the essence:
Find the thing that makes you happy, and use it to make others happy.
You might think, I’ve heard that before, it’s do what makes you happy! But there’s a subtle difference, it’s doing that same thing to make others happy.
Many beliefs and many wise people have said happiness can be found in helping others. If you’ve ever felt that kind of pleasure you’ll understand.
So let’s say tinkering around in your garden is where you’re most happy. Is becoming a gardener the way to go? If you want. Or how about these ideas:
Starting meetups for people to discover the benefits of being in nature, finding their own calm, socialise, make like-minded friends.
Learn some horticultural skills and teach them to others.
Write about the aspects of being in nature that bring you joy, start a blog or social media account, give tips and advice to help others find that same joy.
Grow and sell those same plants that you love looking after and watching flourish, show your customers how they can look after them too.
The underlying theme is spreading your positive feeling, happiness, hope, calm etc.
All of the above could easily grow into a business with a little thought. You’ll be doing something that makes you happy and sharing that with others to increase their happiness. Win win!
I do have an alternative if this doesn’t work for you. It’s on the other side of the coin…
Identify your biggest struggle in life, and help others heal from it.
Maybe you’ve battled with depression, an eating disorder, low self-worth. You don’t need to be fully healed yourself to start helping others in the same situation. The act of helping others will naturally help you. You’d be better placed than most having been there yourself.
A lot of marketing terms conjure up unhelpful imagery, especially if you’re striving to make a genuine connection.
Let’s take a look at some of them, and see how we can improve the language so it sits better.
The Hook / Customer Hook / How to Hook Your Customers
I can’t help but picture catching a customer with a fishing hook, and dragging them unwillingly to the surface like a fish! While that’s not the intention of the term, the feeling it evokes isn’t always useful when trying to think of ways to share your product or service. Plus, hooks are often used as click-bait or to shock. Methods we want to try to avoid.
You’re essentially trying to connect with someone, when you meet someone in real life you don’t connect with them by creating a hook to reel them in, you try to find common ground as a means of connection. So maybe we can instead say:
The Connection / Customer Connection / How to Connect With Your Customers
Target Audience / How to Target Your Customer
Whatever way you look at it, ‘target’ is not a jolly word. If you look up similar nouns you get:
prey quarry game kill bag
No wonder it doesn’t make for good feelings! We could think instead of phrasing like the below:
ldeal Customer / How to Connect With Your Customers
Persuade/ Be persuasive
Impress / Be impressive
You catch my drift! Changing the language can have a profound effect on how comfortable you are with putting together your marketing material.
So next time you come across:
5 Hacks to be more persuasive!
.. for you it means
5 Ways to be more impressive!
… and you can get on with finding ways to impress prospective clients 🖤
This is a resource I’ll probably keep updating as the concept develops. I wanted a tool to help with creating sincere messages for posts which;
* get your message across clearly
* come from a place of love
* doesn’t jeopardise personal or business integrity
Messages that will leave you feeling good and in alignment with your business which is in the business of doing good.
For this I use a mental visualisation of a love-machine, you imagine it however you want, that part isn’t important. It’s the feeling that counts.
Our aim is to imagine our message is going to be read by someone we love, so we want it to be transparent and honest. We don’t want to mislead them, pressure them or otherwise make them feel ‘sold to’ because we love them, right?
What you want to say “Check out my scented candles, they are amazing! Buy one today!”
Let’s pop this into the love-machine…
Maybe you’ll get something like this: “Feel a surge of calm with my jasmine scented candles, handmade with love.”
This feels more loving, you’re offering them what they’re seeking which is calm. You’re not being pushy or urgent, in fact you’re embodying calm in your message.
Ask yourself the following questions to help craft your message:
* Who needs my scented candles, who will they help, who do you make them for? Possible answer: Stressed people who look forward to winding down at the end of a busy day.
* Why do you make them? Possible answer: Because I know how stressful life can be and I want to help people feel better.
Use the answers to put together a sentence which you can work with:
“Are you stressed and need help winding down? I know how that feels so I made these…”
Play around with it, try several variations and remember to keep checking for sincerity and love.
You’re in the business of helping others because that’s what brings you joy. Helping others is what nourishes you so it’s important to bring that into your marketing. People will notice this and it will work in your favour. Like attracts like, nice attracts nice.
This way your messaging will connect with your audience, and you know your audience because you work closely with them.
Which connects better?
“Stressed? Try my bath bombs for the best relaxation!”
“You need help relaxing, my bath bombs are a good place to start.” “I make bath bombs to help you relax” “My bath bombs have you in mind”
These sound more like a friend, someone who cares.
Try it now, give a post the love treatment and feel free to comment below with what you come up with 🖤
How differently does something look when looking at it through the lens of love? And what exactly does this mean?
To put it simply, when we create a social media post, a landing page, a flyer or some other marketing asset, are we considering whether we’d be comfortable with the marketing message if it was put in front of the eyes of someone we love?
Can we say with certainty that the message isn’t teetering on misleading, maybe a little pushy or (like some ads), deceptive? If we’re totally honest with ourselves and the message leaves even a little sour taste in our mouths then perhaps it’s worth a rethink.
I’m not being judgemental, I’ve made posts which didn’t sit well. This type of post is common and often born of desperation. We desperately want to share our gift but are unclear on how to do it, so we might come across the wrong way. People pick up on this and it’s a turn off.
Let’s think about how we can tweak our message so it leaves us feeling good and the audience feeling great.
I imagine a ‘love machine’, sorry, couldn’t think of a better name! We put our sentences in and a new sentence pops out after having had the love treatment.
Here is a simple example:
“Buy now at 50% off only until midnight!”
How might putting it through the love-machine alter it?
“We have a 50% sale which is ending soon and we’d love you to try our product.”
It’s honest about intentions (we’d love you to try our product), there’s no urgency or pushiness. It’s just nicer, isn’t it? This is a very simple example but you can see how the change of tone and language leaves you, the poster, feeling good.
Before every post you write, put the message through the love machine and see what comes out. It’s a lovely thought-experiment which gets easier with time. Available on the resources page.
For some of us, there’s an underlying ‘ick’ behind marketing our own business. We can’t put our finger on it, but it feels somehow distasteful. I’ve met people who have used the word manipulative. It doesn’t have to be either of those things if we shift the way we perceive marketing.
I suspect this is something to do with upbringing and subconsciously held beliefs towards making money.
Ask someone to hand over their well-earned cash? Yuck.
But we’ve got an amazing product or service that customers will absolutely benefit from!
Still, we tip-toe around asking point blank for someone to take a chance on us because it feels down-right cheeky at times, and we weren’t raised to be cheeky.
Notice we have far fewer hesitations when it comes to bigging-up someone else’s business?
It’s SO much easier to sing the praises and ‘sell’ the offerings of a friend or family member. Because you’re not the one obliged to see it through. We encourage others more than we encourage ourselves and we’re far less critical of others as we are about ourselves.
But… if we truly believe in what we’re selling and it aligns with our personal values (most of which we’re not always conscious of which is sometimes why it’s tricky to know what they are)… then we’re doing less selling and more raving about something we’re in love with.
Much like the way new mums can talk with unmatched knowledge and enthusiasm about all the details of their new baby, detailing with amazing accuracy feeding times, naps, nappy changes and how many poos they’ve done today (guilty as charged).
They’re invested by love, and therefore everything they do, they do through the lens of love. A much nicer way to do anything.