I stumbled upon this article & could not resist to share it! Here are four great tips by Sharon Long Baerny on customer-centric copywriting. I simply loved it & feel its so important for everyone to connect with the consumers. Its easy for me to say right now, but its easier to forget this too… here in the article, Sharon has simplified the approach of customer-centric copywriting. (I’ve created this small picture to help me remember her advice on top of my mind)
1. You’re great, but stop being you!
To write effective marketing copy, whether for online or print, you have to stop thinking like you, the one inside the business, and start thinking like them, the potential customers outside the business. Without knowing what your prospects want and how they think, how can you…
- Speak directly to them, about them?
- Empathize and earn their trust?
- Create a compelling offer?
So forget what you want to tell the customer, forget everything you know about what makes your wizbangball so fabulous… and focus on the customer.
2. Do they know they have a problem:
You can’t sell your solution until your prospect recognizes that she has a problem that needs solving. So ask yourself: Are your customers even aware that they have a problem? And if they do realize they have a problem, how do they think about it? Maybe the problem is they don’t sleep well. So what they want is a good night’s sleep, yet they aren’t aware that a new mattress will fix that problem for them.
This is a critical part of understanding your customer’s mindset. It means you have a two-staged message to craft. First, you address the problem they do know they have, then you show them how your product or service fixes that problem by connecting the dots for them.
In this case, you first relate to how awful it is to go through the day tired, to lack the energy for everything you want to accomplish. Then you enlighten them that many sleep problems are caused by bad mattresses. And then you get to segue into your good mattress.
You don’t start off selling the mattress. You start off empathizing and offering a solution to the problem—as perceived by your customer.
3. Talk their talk:
Being customer-centric also means using the words they are using. An office furniture manufacturer might sell “panel systems,” but their customers buy “cubicles.” Or consider the landscape company that insists on using the term “enhancement services,” whereas prospects shopped for “landscaping.”
If you’re not using your customer’s words, you don’t just have an SEO keyword problem and won’t rank well in Google, you have a communication problem, too. It doesn’t matter if you prefer one word over another, you have to use customers’ words, or risk not communicating.
Salespeople are usually the most in tune with the vocabulary that customers use to describe your products and services. If you can’t learn the words from your customers, ask your salespeople.
4. Know your ideal customer:
Just because someone is a customer doesn’t necessarily mean that you want that person to be one. It’s better to figure out who your ideal customer is and market specifically to that person. You also must know whether you’re communicating with the person who makes the buying decision. Are you marketing to a decision-maker or an end-user? Is that end-user someone who influences the decision maker? Then, you can craft your message accordingly.
(read the full article here) Sharon Long Baerny is a marketing maven for We Know Words , a Seattle-area agency focused on customer-centric copywriting