August 3, 2010
Sales Jargon and Cold Information Do Not Build Trust
The other day I stumbled onto the website of a business coach. Two seconds after I got there, I was ready to click away. I know I’m one of the most skeptical internet buyers out there so I’m always curious as to what makes me click away. It keeps coming down to the same thing…sales jargon and cold information.
Let me define what I’m talking about first.
Sales Jargon - Pre-formed statements that supposedly get people to buy. Things like “Sign up right now!” “You’re going to love this.” “You can’t live without this.” That kind of thing.
Cold Information - Information for information sake, with no real value to offer. These are the sites that explain exactly what you are going to get without telling you why you want it. This feels cold. Like there is no person behind it. A robot could have written it.
For some people these tactics work great! In fact, your website shouldn’t be devoid of these things. You just need to add some of YOU into your website if you want clients to trust you enough to share their life stories with you.
Let’s go back to the website I saw the other day. Most of the headlines were some sort of marketing jargon. In between it was all information about building a business that I had heard 100 times before. Now, yes, I do surf coaching websites all the time, so I’m more likely to have read it elsewhere. At the same time, do you think your potential clients are going to go to your site without checking out others like it? I doubt it!
Market to me without telling me your marketing. They are on your website. They already know you are trying to sell them something. Talk to your target market as if they are in the room with you. Share with them that you know who they are by describing them. What would your ideal client want to know up front? Give them the information they need conversationally. As if you were answering their question one-to-one….not one to masses. That’s why it’s so important to get to know your ideal client. So, you know who they are and can speak to that.
Infuse your personality. I have editors that review my copy before I put it out on my website. Many times they make suggestions to get rid of certain colloquialisms. Usually, I ignore their advice because it’s MY words. I want MY words out on that website so people can relate to me. It’s important to use proper grammar and use correct spelling, but it’s also important to speak like you do in person.
I didn’t see a picture of the coach anywhere. In fact, there weren’t any graphics for me to connect with at all. Just a bunch of words. When I did finally find my way to the “about” page, I found even more information. Information about the education of the coach. I found information about how that coach works with their clients too. That’s not going to cut it. By the time I get to the end of this page I should have a sense of who this coach is and why they care about me. Credentials, experience and the coach’s process substantiate that but if I’m going to trust you with my dreams then you have to give me a little more than that. I want to know who you are as a person and as a coach.
Share with me. Tell me that you run marathons, enjoy time with your kids, play baseball in the summer, and go on a hiking retreat every year. Substantiate your expertise with information about who you are and what you love. Tell me that your mission is to help your clients find happiness in their lives, because you once weren’t happy. Things like that will get my attention.
Your most valuable asset is not your list! It’s YOU! Use it to your advantage. What do you think? What do you want to know? Is there anything you want to change now?
Kristen Beireis is the Trust Marketing Expert for Group Coaching Mastery. She helps coaches and other personal transformation professionals establish trust through marketing. First, she establishes a foundation that's rooted in your authentic differentiation. Then she follows up with solutions that bring consistency to everything that has your name on it — from your newsletter to your business card to your social media pages. And while she's happy to teach you how to do all this yourself, many of her clients love the way her team reduces their workload and overwhelm.
Greater trust means a shorter sales cycle, more of the right clients, and the confidence that comes from knowing your sales and marketing are in integrity with who you are as a person.