Like Me? Follow Me.
If you want your business website’s copy to appeal to your target market, you have to spend some time getting to know who that market is.
Now, we’re not talking Robert De Niro-style method acting here. If your target market is 85-year-old, pipe-smoking ex-jockeys, I’m not suggesting you prop your feet up with an aged whisky and peruse the racing fixtures. Rather, take a few moments before you set fingers to keyboard, and think about who you’re writing for.For Example...
It’s my belief that ideas and concepts are always best illustrated by examples; consider, if you will, that you are tasked with writing the text for a solicitor’s website. You are asked to write a page of text aimed at winning new business clients, and a page of text for the personal injury section entitled ‘Accidents at Work’. Here’s what that text might look like:
Welcome to Berry, Triste & Mansell Solicitors, one the UK’s premier teams of business law specialists. Our experienced solicitors are capable of advising clients on everything from property and debt recovery to commercial litigation, and enjoy an exemplary reputation amongst current clients and legal peers.
And now, for the personal injury text:
If you’ve been injured in a slip, trip or fall at work or in a public place, the personal injury team at Berry, Triste & Mansell Solicitors can help you claim the compensation you deserve. When you suffer a debilitating injury as a result of another individual’s negligence, compensation is your legal right.
Now if I’m doing my job properly, there should be a marked difference in tone between these two pieces of writing.
The first excerpt is intended to appeal to business clients, and therefore the tone is official and informative, stressing the good reputation and therefore implied reliability of the law firm. In contrast, the second excerpt is aimed at potential personal injury claimants and attempts to reassure them that they are entitled to make a claim, and are in fact well within their rights to pursue monetary reparations for an accident that wasn’t their fault.
Improve your conversion rate...
Taking the time to think about who you are writing for can have a significant affect on your website’s conversion rate. In the above case of the solicitor, avoiding bombarding potential claimants with unnecessary legal jargon, and avoiding putting off their potential business clients with an excessively sales oriented tone, means they are more likely to retain clients’ interest. This in turn, makes the clients more likely to pick up the phone or complete the contact form.
OK, so you’re on board with this targeted copy stuff, and you’re ready to get writing, but how do you start? I find the best way of getting into the mind of my target audience is to spend a few moments thinking about what questions they will want answered by my page of text. I usually start by making a note of these questions, and attempt to answer them to the best of my ability in the copy.
For instance, a personal injury claimant may be thinking:
I’ve been injured at work, am I eligible for compensation? What kind of accident do people normally claim for? How do I go about making a claim? How much compensation could I be awarded? Is this law firm reputable? How do I find out more?
Ordering your thoughts in this manner really helps you to focus on the needs of your client, rather than your own ideas about what they want from the site, which could be coloured by your own professional understanding of the business.
This concept is true of all businesses, not just solicitors. Identifying your target market and pointing your copy in their direction can prove to be an extremely valuable weapon in the ongoing battle to retain client interest and secure new business.
Just remember, the copy is for your clients, not for you. Answer their questions, keep them informed, keep them happy and watch the conversions roll in.