If your lead generation offer is only about your firm being “best-in-class” and “results-focused,” you’re probably going to lose out to competitors creating content that people actually care about. Their own dramas, problems, challenges and selfish interests. Them, not you.
In other words, your company details are the last piece of the information puzzle, not the first.
John Jantsch from ducttapemarketing.com puts it nicely…
You know you’re really, really into marketing when seeing cheesy stock photography on a company website actually angers you.
Is it just the laziness of it? Or that the company in question is blowing a chance at actually differentiating themselves as opposed to looking like yet another clip art clone? Is it that the decision makers behind it actually think it makes them look more “professional” and committed-to-excellence?
Your brand is not a logo, image or “differentiation statement.”
Your brand is simply this: The specific problem that you solve and the specific people/companies that you solve it for.
Your logo and image help reinforce your brand, but by themselves are meaningless. If you want your marketing to have impact, to resonate, to mean something to clients and give them a reason to call you first, then focus your attention on communicating the problem that you solve directly to the prospects who most likely have that problem and are willing to invest in a solution.
Even better, start creating content that actually helps your market tackle the problem. Become known as the firm that solves X…one prospect at a time, one reader at a time.
You’re at a party. An attractive, well dressed woman (or man) walks up to you from across the room.
The first words out of her (his) mouth are, “I am the best looking person here. In fact, I am second to none. Why? Because of my commitment to excellence and proprietary approach to personal grooming. My past boyfriends (girlfriends) agree, I really am best in class. Let me tell you about what sets me apart from the other women (men) here.”
Why would this approach be so absurd in real life, and yet remains the status quo for professional services marketing?
Forget the marketing cliches and platitudes, and instead keep in mind that your home page, sales letters and proposals are going to be read by humans.
“What do you do?”
“I create lead generation offers to help make it easier to identify, reach and influence new clients.”
Crickets. That phrase might mean a lot to me, but it means almost nothing to almost everyone else. It’s too vague, there’s no context, and they were probably only asking to be polite anyway.
“What do you do?”
“Well, you know how in your industry companies will host seminars about _____________ to attract new business? I create similar campaigns for my clients, but instead of live seminars, we use on-demand webinars to reach more people.”
“You know how prospecting by phone and trying to get an appointment is really hard? I help make it easier for my clients to connect with prospects and open a conversation.”
Neither one is the only right answer. The point is to put “what you do” in context, as much as possible, of what they already know and understand. If what you say strikes a chord, they’ll ask more questions and give you the chance to go into more detail about what you do and who you do it for.
At the very least you’ll get fewer blank stares.
Are you feeling a little Analog in a Digital world?
Join the club.
Reading about all the newest and greatest Facebook plug ins and Twitter tricks, one can feel that connecting with other people through anything other than a mobile app will soon be obsolete.
But that’s just it…all of these wonderful new tools exist for one reason; to connect us to others. We need it. After all, we’re social animals.
And when all is said and done, face-to-face connection is still the deepest connection we can have with each other.
So if you’ve never Tweeted in your life, or “liked” anything on Facebook, but can truly connect with others in real life, then breath a sigh of relief. You’re going right to the source.
Has prospecting for new clients broken your heart one too many times? Here’s a cure to mend your relationship with this most fickle of creatures…
- Learn how to create an instant connection and grab people’s attention (Hint: It’s about them, not you)
- Focus on solving people’s problems, not pitching your services
- Use a prospecting approach you’re comfortable with, and do more of it
- Focus on long term, multiple contacts, not all-or-nothing one shot attempts
- Focus on the person you’re contacting and learn about who they are
- Accept that there are abundant prospects and clients out there…you will never run out of people to connect with
- Fully prepare for your calls
- Let go of the outcome of any one call. You can’t control it anyway. Instead, focus on the things you can control (research, preparation, etc)
Fall in love with reaching out to the people who have the problems you solve, and you’ll never have to worry about attracting clients.
Happy Valentines Day