Building empathy with your target market

When I get inbound new business calls (regarding potential coaching clients), I always like to enquire where they heard about me/found me. This is a prerequisite for any business that does any form of marketing (after all you need to do more of what works, and less of what doesn’t!).

So last week I met a new prospect (who has since become a client) to discuss helping their agency grow and develop a clearer market position. I asked where he heard about me and he had an interesting story to tell:

He runs a number of training courses focused on writing and content development. On one of his courses he shows an example of a bad website and an example of a good website. It turns out he has been using my website for some time as the good example (fortunately not the bad one!). And he kept thinking, I must give Da Costa Coaching a call at some point.

That point was this month because he has hit a brick wall in the development of his business and wants to move it forward and was interested to see how I could help him.

Standing out from the crowd

So that’s great isn’t it? – to get an endorsement and win a client at the same time. But what makes my website stand out (to the point that it is used as a good example of website writing)?

My bugbear about so many websites is that they are all about the company and show little understanding of their potential customers (except in a case study that is buried deeper in the site – where there is a good chance a new reader will never reach). Yet what you really need to do very quickly with website visitors is build empathy – show them you understand them and recognise the key challenges they face (that your product / service can solve).   The typical website starts by saying “We do this and we do that and aren’t we great” but if you haven’t already built some empathy and credibility with the reader then they are likely to think “who cares!”

Websites should be about building awareness and credibility. The home page should demonstrate you understand who your target customer is and show you understand their challenges. This makes the reader want to learn more – which will probably lead them to click on the ‘about us’ page and find out who you are. Of course companies can only do this if they have an in-depth understanding of who their target customer is. And if you are thinking, “but we can sell to anyone” then you are likely to sell to no one! You need to “pin your colours to the mast” and focus your marketing on the specific market sectors, and this starts with your website.

If this resonates with you yet all sounds quite complex, then get in touch, give me a call and let’s have a chat.

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