Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Don’t let your thesaurus eat your leads

We don’t claim to be a copywriting company. We let each clients data guide the recommendations we make on their digital business and optimization strategy. That said, we fully appreciate the importance of good copy in the persuasion/conversion process, and there is no place worse for brutal copy than B2B.

Tell me what you do or you won’t get my business

I have worked exclusively on the vendor/consultant side in B2B for my entire career. After over a decade of looking at business websites, I have a pretty good idea of how to cut the wheat from the chaff to find out what a given firm does.

I look at the homepage, and if I still don’t know what they do, I click on “About Us”.  If I still don’t know what they do, I click on “Products/Solutions”. At this point I will click on “Clients” and if I see some big names, I will just call the receptionist and ask... ”What do you guys do exactly?”

I have been doing some vendor research today, and I have bumped into at least 10 websites where I don’t really know what they do.

A few quotes for context:

“...leading center of excellence for catalyzing online direct to consumer interactions.”

What?

“Marrying the relational and serendipitous characteristics of the in-store shopping experience with the efficiency, convenience and flexibility of online shopping.”

Huh?


“A customer-centric, technology-driven, global company that delivers effective solutions for our strategic partners across multiple industries”

Sigh.

These are all real quotes by the way, and I could literally go on for miles with just sites I have looked at today.

Let’s talk about how unspecific, over-worded content manages visitor intent. Visitor A, who is a decision-maker and cheque-signer at a large company, desperately needs to bring an email marketing vendor on board. She types “Email marketing service” into Google, sees your paid link, and clicks to your site. She is then confronted with copy that assertively states that your “2.0 digital communications fulfillment solution remotely empowers increased effectiveness of gap bridging internet harnesses....”

You just lost your visitor.

Your competitor has a homepage that says this. “We have a world class email marketing tool that is being used by companies just like you. Click here to talk to sales or request a demo”

Now you’ve lost the sale as well.

Trust me, the data will show how treating your homepage like a practice exam for the SAT-Verbal will impact your goal conversion: badly.

Cheers,

Jim

P.S. We will be launching our new Napkyn.com site in a few weeks. Make sure to attach a link to this article in any flames about over-wordy content.

Wicked thesaurus image courtesy snorgtees.com

1 comment:

openid said...

Great post Jim!

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