In the last few years, I have seen a shift happening in the world of online marketing. I am guessing you’ve seen it too. It’s a shift from content that hypes a product (or makes claims that can’t be substantiated) to a heart-centered approach that resonates with people in a kinder, gentler way.
“Marketing and writing with heart, not hype” has been my tag line because it is a philosophy I’ve valued for a long time.
I even stepped down from a project once when my client asked me to make promises that his product was not going to deliver. An important tip to remember, is “Don’t make promises you can’t keep” because bad news travels fast (faster than good). You want that positive word-of-mouth—not negative reviews—spreading like wildfire.
So how do you learn how to write from the core of your being and communicate a message that speaks to your audience’s desires?
With the help of a great philosopher—Dr. Seuss—here are three guidelines to follow:
I have a client who said to me, “‘Be authentic’ is beginning to sound so cliché.” And, as a result, he was hesitant to say what he really wanted to share with others because he wasn’t sure his message was different.
I believe that you can’t go wrong when you are authentic and speak your truth. Keep in mind that people want to work with those people who show compassion and concern for the issues they face daily.
“People buy from people they like. When you allow your personality to come through, people feel a sense of intimacy with you. They begin to trust you. And like you. Rapport is built. And sales happen . . . . People want to read words from a trusted friend,” wrote Joe Vitale, author of Hypnotic Writing.
As you write, feel what you are trying to convey—let some emotions seep in. After all, when you’re telling a story face-to-face when talking to a friend, you move your hands, change your inflection, move your eyes, your body and more.
As Joe Vitale said, “Put excitement into your writing. Let go. Feel emotion. Get moved and you’ll move your reader . . . write . . . with all the spontaneous energy and enthusiasm you have. Be yourself. Don’t write to impress; write to share a feeling.”
Your attitude and your visible confidence are two qualities that attract people to you. When you’re confident about yourself—as well as the program or service you’re offering and how it helps your ideal clients—that clarity comes across in your marketing message and people respond to it in a positive way.
In my humble opinion, life is about relationships (and so is marketing), but first, there is the relationship with one’s self.
Be genuine and realize it is okay for the world to see who you truly are. I think some of the most engaging and inviting content I’ve seen comes from heartfelt professionals who are okay with being transparent.
Being transparent helps your prospects and customers feel closer to you—an essential step in boosting sales with trust and integrity.
Deepak Chopra said, “If you’ve been caught up in an anxious search for love, happiness or anything else, you can let go of the struggle and endless quest for self-improvement. And, instead, begin to open to the awareness of who you really are.”
Who are you? As I explained earlier, speak from your heart. You can share:
When you do this, you relate to people and people relate back to you, so they develop a stronger bond with you because of your common experience.
For instance, I started my business in 1989 after looking for a J-O-B. Colorado was in a recession at the time, and everywhere I went, prospective employers said, “We’re not hiring; we’re laying people off.” I was frustrated and, needless to say, worried because I had a mortgage to pay.
However, those people who said they weren’t hiring also said, “Debra, if you were a freelancer, we could use your services.” Hence, The Write Direction was born. And as a result, when I share this story with others who wish to be in business for themselves, they’re encouraged by it—especially since I’m still standing twenty-five-plus years later.
I’m going to suggest that you sit down with a pen and paper (this stimulates your subconscious more than typing on a keyboard) and just write.
Joe Vitale says he commands or requests the writing from his unconscious, and he explains that “Some of the greatest writers of all time did not THINK through their writing. Instead, they listened to something within and just wrote.”
My mentor, Gene Schwartz, would set a timer and write in 33:33 minute spurts.
I write Morning Pages each morning—three pages of stream-of-consciousness writing.
I’ve read that direct response copywriter Dan Kennedy writes for an hour each morning, no matter what. The point is that these writers keep the door open to their unconscious—allowing creativity to come on in.
Joe Vitale writes, “…my first big secret is that when I sit to write, I do it without much of an idea of what I will say.”
As you write, don’t worry about what comes out; just be real and put your thoughts down on paper. Let it flow—uncensored, without judging yourself. You can fine tune it later.
Perfectionists! Go Easy on Yourself
“Have no fear of perfection, you’ll never achieve it.” — Salvador Dali
“I have learned a fundamental key to success: Don’t wait for perfection . . . . Don’t let striving for perfection stand in the way of getting results.” — Joe Vitale
“Sloppy success is better than perfect mediocrity.” — Alex Mandossian
“Practice means what it says: writing is something to be done over and over, something that improves through the repetitive doing but that needs not be done perfectly . . . Consistency is the key to mastering the instrument that is you.” — Julia Cameron
These quotes are just food for thought when you feel like you are banging your head against a wall and seeking perfection.
There are certainly guidelines to follow for writing captivating content that converts your prospects into customers.
However, a good beginning—even if you hire a copywriter to write for you—is to look inside yourself. Who is the person you want to be? Let your personality shine through because people want to know the real you, not a carbon copy of someone else.
Or as Oscar Wilde said: “Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”
I am always surprised how people will spend thousands of dollars on website design, yet don’t get help with their content. A nice logo and pretty colors alone won’t sell (unless maybe you’re a photographer or artist)—you need magnetic words. Your words are what encourage, motivate and inspire prospects to take action.
Remember this: People want what you have to offer them.
Now is the time to let your light shine!
Are you sharing your authentic self with your audience? If not, what’s holding you back? Comment below.
This is an excerpt from my best-selling book Millionaire Marketing on a Shoestring Budget™: How to Attract a Steady Stream of Happy Clients, Make More Money and Live Your Dream.