You may have heard the expression, “What’s in it for me?” applied to today’s consumers views and approach to engagement and purchasing. Today’s audiences need to see direct benefits for themselves from your product, service and from your brand. Whether you are a corporate brand, an individual or a cause, your audience is assessing your value from the perspective of what they gain or benefit from you.
Often, however, when we set out to market to these audiences, we forget this. We gear all of our messaging, our value statements and even the articulation of the return on the audience’s investment based on what we need or want to promote.
We write web copy that starts with “we,” we talk about the value of our services in terms of what we hope to accomplish, our mission and our focus, and our resumes read like a list of personal accomplishments our mothers would be proud of. We attempt to make ourselves compelling and relevant based on our needs and our accomplishments.
Effective marketing is about THEM – the audience. Instead of marketing from your own perspective of What’s in it for me?” try creating messaging and marketing platforms from W.I.I.F.T. – What’s in it for them?
Put yourself in your audience’s shoes and consider your value statement, your company offer and your individual reputation from the perspective of those who matter a lot – the ones who have the wallets! Instead of sharing your mission, goals and core beliefs as “me” statements, try incorporating the needs and voice of your audience as you promote yourself.
Try these examples. Instead of:
– “Our core values are to build trust with our clients…”
Try: “Our clients can hold us accountable to represent their best interests at all times.”
– “We are about furthering the agenda of the education industry”
Try: “Together we can bring the needs of inner-city youth to the forefront and make change.”
– “My personal brand is that I am hard working and dedicated.”
Try: “As your agent, I will not sleep until I know that you are.”
Many of you know that I am a public speaker who presents a program on personal branding to corporations, associations and groups across the country. I used to be a pretty good speaker. I became a great speaker – highly sought after – when I realized that my program was not about me… but is about creating awareness, educating and empowering my audiences with the tools to stand apart from their competition. When I made the message about them – the people sitting in the room, pen in hand, looking for information and inspiration – I became a great speaker.
Putting your emphasis on the needs and goals of your audience shifts your attention to others and allows your authentic and real goals to shine through.