All day, every day, our lives are filled with words. They’re communicated to us in verbal or written form and have a huge impact on our decisions and opinions. That’s why when you talk about your business, having an acute understanding of your audience and what they want to hear is essential to building brand awareness and sales. This applies to the written word as well. You probably put more written words in to the universe each day than verbal, and those are forever searchable courtesy of the Internet. Speaking and writing with intention and authority on your business is something that takes planning and practice.
Take these four ideas about how to integrate your best business voice into any kind of communication.
Drop the jargon and speak their language
When discussing your business, it’s easy to get sucked into the technical terms and nitty-gritty details of what makes your business special. You’re entrenched in every aspect of the business and it’s exciting! However, when you’re speaking to someone or writing to an audience, remember that they are not intimately involved with your company and they need to understand the overarching business objective before they hear about the minutiae.
This is where you need to speak layman’s terms and use language that is more typical and conversational than industry-specific. Your audience will appreciate you breaking down your business into simplified terms, and will be more likely to learn more since they appreciate what your business is out to accomplish. In essence, give them the Reader’s Digest version of your business before the whitepaper.
Emphasize the implicit value of your business
Communicate your business’s value to its customers instead of leading with an explanation of what your company does. It’s safe to say that everyone prefers to hear about how something will enhance or simplify their life rather than learn about the functionality of a product.
Bring the value proposition to life by highlighting key differentiators from your competitors, but most importantly, clarify what the business means for the customer. Does it ultimately save them time and money? Perhaps it gives them the competitive edge they need to grow their business. Whatever the benefits are, make them apparent in your speech and writing. People use rationale to make decisions, and when the perceived benefits outweigh costs and any other limiting factors, they’re more likely to purchase your services or products.
Make it short and sweet
We’ve all experienced someone who belabors a point or takes five minutes to explain something that could have been said in 15 seconds. The ability to speak or write succinctly is utterly important for your small business. It’s been noted in report after report how people’s attention spans are decreasing and you have less than eight seconds to convince someone to read an article. This is an incredibly short amount of time, so a verbose explanation is not going to win business. Brevity is your best friend when speaking or writing about your company.
Think about what makes your business unique and hone in on a few talking points that are concise and exclude hyper-technical terminology. Your language should be descriptive and enchanting, as well as informative. Make these your go-to topics when interacting with a new audience. Captivating your audience through your words, whether written or spoken, creates a personal experience, which engenders mutual respect and is a critical part of any loyal customer relationship. John Michael Morgan, a renowned leadership and achievement coach, said it best,
“People are looking for a connection. Tell a good enough story about your brand and people will not only get invested, they’ll want to buy from you.”
Stick with a tone of voice
Undoubtedly, you have a specific way of talking about your business. You may not even realize it, but there is a cadence and tone associated with the way you communicate your brand. It’s important to establish a recognizable voice that is easily associated with your business. This helps customers link your content and messages to your business. These quick associations are paramount for building brand awareness.
Don’t know where to begin building your preferred tone of voice? Take some time to consider what the key characteristics of your business are, and translate those into your verbal and written expression. Remember that your voice should fit naturally with your business and brand image. Once you have solidified your tone of voice, make sure to stick with it! Customers need repetition and consistency, and using the same voice across all forums will enhance your credibility.
We hope you found these tips helpful and can assist you in clearly articulating your business to anyone, anywhere, at any time.
About the Author: Julie Chomiak is the Content Marketing Specialist for Webs and Pagemodo. When she’s not scouring the web for small business trends, Julie loves traveling, interior design, and animals of all kinds. Get more from Julie on the Webs Blog and the Pagemodo blog.