You’re passionate about your business. You understand what you do, and you know that it helps people. The problem is that every time you start talking, you feel like you’re tripping over your own words.
You start rambling and hope that if you keep talking, the person in front of you will connect to something and want to find out more.
More often than not, though, you can see that they just don’t get what you do. It’s frustrating and worse yet, it’s impacting your bottom line.
The truth is that if you’re confusing your audience you’re killing your chance to grow your business.
Now, this isn’t the first time I have talked about this subject, but it’s worth repeating: the clearer you can be with your message – using language that is relevant to your ideal client, the more likely people will be to engage with your brand and want to buy from you.
“78% of consumers believe that companies focused on custom content are more trustworthy than companies who simply churn out generic content.” -Crowdspring.com
Most small business owners get caught in what’s called “the trap of knowledge”. When you talk about your business, you talk about it from the perspective of what you think is important. You might even talk about some of the byproduct benefits of working with you, but forget about the things that are important to your ideal audience right now.
Step One: Talk to Your Audience About the Problems They Face Right Now
Your ideal client has a problem in their life and they want it solved. They may not care about the fact that once it’s solved, they’re going to be able to solve it for others or be able to bungee jump from a cliff.
What they care about is the problem that’s right in front of them.
All too often when we talk about our business, we talk about it from the perspective of someone who has a knowledge base of 10, when we should be talking about it as if we’ve never ever encountered this business and want information.
This is true whether you’re creating content for your website, a sales page, a sales letter or even a social media post, you need to remember the real pain they feel and not the perceived pain.
So, what does that mean for you – how do you actually learn how to talk to your audience and meet them where they’re at, instead of what you personally know about your biz.
Well, one thing you can do is look at what’s happening in their life right now.
For example, if you’re a life coach for people facing divorce, you want to tap into the everyday pain someone in their position might feel. Instead of focusing on the fact that they’re going to learn to truly love themselves after they’re done coaching with you, focus on the fact that you’ll help them ease confusion, calm their fears and help them get organized to take action.
Even though they will get the side benefit of really loving who they are – right now, they don’t care. All they want is to feel better and ease their fear. If you can talk directly to their pain, chances are, people are going to feel understood and connect better to your overall message.
Step Two: Tell Them What You Do in 3 Steps
There is magic to the number 3. The reason is that the human brain can handle only so much until information overload hits.
One of the things we forget is to breakdown what we do into steps so that it becomes consumable for our audience.
When you tell people what you do and how to interact with your business in steps, they’re more likely to understand your business.
As a StoryBrand Certified Guide, what I’ve learned is that if you imagine that people’s problems are like a rushing river – when you show people the stones they need to cross in order to get to the other side, they feel like they’ve found the solution they’ve been waiting for.
When you look at what you offer, it’s likely that you offer way more than a three step solution – but, if you really break it down into groups of actions or phases, you can likely explain what you do simply in a way that people FINALLY get what you do.
For example, I’m a brand strategist, copywriter and business coach. I have several different packages and services that I offer, but basically when I talk to my audience I let them know that what I do is (1) listen to your brand and marketing needs, (2) I create a specific strategy and content plan for your website, sales funnels and social media; and (3) I execute by delivering all the content you need to grow your business.
By breaking it down into three steps, my audience can now see how their own personal journey with me might look. It makes it easier for them to see how working with me can actually help them cross their river of problems.
So, how do you do this for yourself?
Well, begin by looking at your client’s journey. Ask yourself the following questions:
- What is the first thing you want people to do? Schedule a consultation, fill out a form, buy a starter package? Write out what you really want people to do to get to know you and your biz.
- What do you then offer them that can help them decide or entice them to work with you? Perhaps you offer a personalized plan or require them to commit to a certain package. Or you offer them a comprehensive step-by-step plan. Whatever you want them to do next, help them understand what they get after taking that initial step.
- Tell your audience about the benefits. This last step usually helps your audience see that they’ve almost reached the solution. If your ideal client struggles with execution, be sure to tell them that you’ll help them execute with ease. Similarly, if you are a nutritionist that can help them lose weight, let them know that you have success rates that others don’t see. The key is helping them picture that last hurdle.
By breaking up your solution into three steps, it helps you stay structured in your conversation and resist the temptation to ramble on. Plus, when you break it down super simply, people tend to visualize themselves in the story you create.
Step Three: Accept That You are An Authority and Share it Simply.
Sometimes when we share what we do and who we are, we tend to get wrapped up in demonstrating that we know what we’re doing. We go on and on sharing our background, our training or our academic prowess thinking that people will be impressed by who we are and want to work with us.
The truth is that people don’t care! Unless someone asks you for your personal journey, resist the temptation to go on and on about your expertise.
There are only two things that people care about when it comes to looking for a guide to help them solve their problems.
First, they want to know you understand them. That can be done one of two ways:
- Talk about their problems in a way that makes sense to them (like I’ve stated above); and
- Explain that you’ve been in their exact shoes or solved the problem for others just like them.
People want to know that someone they’re working with gets what they’re going through. Empathy actually matters more than having the right background or education. People want to work with people they like and people who get them. So, focus your energy on telling them why you know what they’re going through.
The second thing people want to know is that you have the authority or expertise to help them.
Now, that doesn’t mean that you have to give them your full resume. In fact, most of the time spelling out EVERYTHING you’ve done will likely be overkill. Believe it or not, it doesn’t take much for people to accept that you are an authority on what you do.
Authority is often best displayed through testimonials, case studies or a story on your about page sharing how you tackled the problem in your business or did it for someone just like them.
While you may want to have a section outlining your official bio, it definitely shouldn’t be the main staple of your content or conversation.
One important thing to remember as you are starting out . . . .don’t downplay your authority.
I’ve talked to countless people who tell me that because they’re new that they don’t have authority or expertise. So, inevitably they downplay it in conversation or content.
Remember, even if you are just starting your business, you can still establish authority. People aren’t always looking for leaders in the industry – they are looking for the right person for them. Keep in mind that you have knowledge, you have tools and you have a solution – focusing on those elements without apology will be most important.
Implement the 3 Steps For Greater Clarity
Whether you’re looking to improve the way you talk to someone one-on-one or improve your overall business message, applying these three elements will help you talk about your business in a better way.
Instead of seeing confused faces, you’ll start to see nods and increase engagement with what you do.
If you want more help, I offer a FREE Jumpstart Your Brand Guide that can further clarify your brand message. This guide will walk you step-by-step through the various components you need in order to have a clear message, including:
- Identifying your ideal client (know your client so well, you can anticipate their every move)
- Understand Your Business Mission
- Identify Your Core Values
- Create a Killer Elevator Pitch
- Learn Where To Share
To get your free guide, click here and enter your name to receive your guide via email!