Imagine you’re inside a shop.
Let’s make it a health food shop, complete with herbal teas and earthy aromas.
You need something to give you energy; a pick-me-up, a boost for your tired, take-away-filled bod. A multivitamin, perhaps? You’re open to suggestion. In fact, you welcome it. Direction and expert advice is what you came here for.
A woman runs towards you as you walk through the door, rattling a bottle of pills.
You! You look tired! You need THIS!
You’re momentarily confused because she’s dressed as a disco ball, but conclude that this bouncing, multifaceted orb must be the shop assistant.
Still waving the pills, she lists a bunch of product features - loud enough to make you flinch - and barely pauses to breathe let alone ask a question.
The words she uses sound foreign and fancy; as comprehensible as Ancient Hebrew. Reflections from each tiny mirror keep hitting you in the eye.
At the end of her mad spiel, she motions to the counter with raised eyebrows.
Buy now! she adds.
What do you do?
If you said ‘get the hell out of there’, I’m with you - like most other people.
Yet businesses continue to create these uncomfortable experiences online. They confuse selling with showy desperation. They equate enticing offers with obnoxious calls-to-action. They communicate in a way that would never pass for polite in person.
Add to that, brand inconsistencies and bad-taste formatting. Websites and sales pages wild enough to make your eyes water - looking like one thing (a disco ball) and attempting to sell another (health).
All this leads to tired, turned-off customers who desperately need a hug.
If you’re a modern business trying to market yourself online, pause to consider:
Are you beating readers around the ears with big headlines, large font and caps lock - or calmly explaining the benefits?
Are you yelling, pleading and coming off desperate - or providing a genuine, honest summary of your services?
Are you caught up with perfecting your call-to-action - or constructing a logical journey based on need and human nature?
Are you performing for applause - or humbly providing a solution?
Ask these questions before crafting your next piece of online content; whether it’s a sales funnel, Facebook ad or editorial.
Be the humble, helpful salesperson - not a wheeling and dealing disco ball.
Watch your readers relax and ask for more.