Promote your business to just one visitor
Small businesses have a great advantage over larger ones: they can offer a much more personalised service, and tailor what they do to suit their customers better.
It can sometimes be hard to convey this to visitors though.
When you write words on your website, in a mailing or on social media do you ever feel like you're casting your words out into the world, not knowing where they'll land or who will read them? I know the feeling!
It's hard to write in a way that will appeal to potential new guests and visitors if you don't know them.
Many end up trying to please everyone with a 'something for everyone' approach that sounds really bland and appeals to no-one. Or they write in a formal style that isn't very appealing and probably not really representative of the 'real' person behind the words.
How can you make all your marketing words sound more genuine, warmer and more heart-felt?
There's a simple solution that will make all your marketing much more effective.
You need to have your ideal visitors in mind so you can address them directly. But even that can sound difficult so here's what to do.
Choose one person. Just one visitor.
Think about one of your visitors you like, someone who has visited before and who liked what you do.
Ideally it will be someone you know a little about. If they've visited before and you have their postcode you could for example look up the street view version of where they live on Google maps, and imagine their life (in a non-stalkery way, obviously!).
Think about what they liked about your business, and anything they said. They might have written a review you can look up?
If your business is new, think about your ideal customer and day dream a little.
If you find it hard to settle on one particular person, you could combine the idea of several visitors into one imaginary person. Give them a name so they feel real.
From now on that person is your Ideal Customer. If you can get hold of their photo or a photo of someone who seems similar to them, even better. Prop it up on your desk so it's at the forefront of your mind when you're doing any marketing.
I do this a lot. It really helps me to write in plain English and appeal to particular markets. When I read back through what I've written I imagine my Ideal Customer's response. Over time they've grown in my imagination so sometimes they answer me back or laugh at me, and tell me to 'get real'...
Focusing on one person can seem a little scary: what happens to everyone else if you focus only on one person? The reality is that if you focus on one person, and imagine them in all your marketing thoughts, and keep them in mind when you write anything, you'll bring your business and own personality alive. You'll write things that will appeal to that person.
Something else will happen too. Although your other visitors may not be exactly like that person, it's likely that those who enjoy what you do will have a similar outlook on life and share similar values.
We may grow older, we may be single or coupled, with or without children living with us, but our values don't tend to massively change through our adult life. The things that make us tick tend to stay the same and evolve rather than radically changing. So if you can keep in mind how your Ideal Customer might think, and what's important to them, you'll appeal to many others at the same time. It's unlikely that you'll offend anyone or put off other people.
Focusing on one person changes how you think and write. it makes your marketing words sound more convincing, more personalised, more direct, more real.