Let’s not beat around the bush – sales feels really icky for a lot of us. As business owners, of course we have to make sales to keep our businesses running, but it still feels gross when something is so overtly sales-y. We all went into business to help people, right? So sometimes, asking for money just seems like it’s way too off-brand!
It can also sometimes feel like your content is very sales-oriented too. Especially when every piece of content is supposed to have a call to action on it. But you don’t want it to always be BUY BUY BUY!
Here are some ideas for how you can reframe your marketing content to avoid coming across as too sales-y and feel like you can share content that sells and feels on-brand.
It’s not about you – it’s about them
I often hear: “I feel like my content is too sales-y”. What specifically is it about your content that feels sales-y to you? This is the first point – identify if there’s something you can easily tweak that feels more comfortable to you.
The second point is that even if you feel that way – chances are, your audience doesn’t feel that way! They know you’re a business, so they know you sell stuff. And they’re probably in your audience because they think they may have a need to buy something from you at some point! So try and see your content from their perspective – is it really that sales-y or is it actually really helpful for them?
Your audience only sees some of your content
Remember that you see all your content but your audience doesn’t! You probably see every single piece of content that goes out on every channel every day. But your target audience is unlikely to see all of this!
It can feel like you’re flogging a dead horse when you keep sharing whatever it is you’re selling. But that’s OK! One of the main points of marketing is ultimately to make sales, so it’s exactly right that some of your content should be sales-oriented. Think about some bigger brands that you personally follow – are you more sales-y than this? Probably not!
Solve a problem and add value
Focus on solving a problem and providing value in the bulk of your content. Then, when you do ask your audience to buy, they don’t mind as much because it isn’t pure sales and you’ve already provided something useful for free. You’re there to help them and sometimes, the best way for you to help them is through your paid services or products.
A really good example of this is email lists. Once someone has signed up for your email list they’ve actively indicated that they want to hear from you. You still want to add loads of value before the sell, but you can feel more confident that they probably expect there will be some sales content in there.
Again, you still want to make sure you’re solving problems and adding value but every now and again it’s fine to send out a stronger promotional communication to share the information to an engaged audience group.
Use a range of calls to action
If you feel like you’re always saying the same thing, try mixing up your calls to action. I’d suggest still keeping the number of CTAs you have to 2 or 3 so it doesn’t get too confusing.
Another way to look at this is to consider your user journey. Your main CTA on your marketing content could be something softer than a ‘buy’ CTA, like follow me on a social media channel, like a post or join an email list. Then, once they’ve completed that step and engaged, you know it’s safer to go in with some more sales-oriented content.
Don’t forget to include some sales information!
Finally, make sure you haven’t gone too far the other way and your audience don’t know how to buy from you! It may still feel a bit uncomfortable, but it’s really important to include your main CTAs in your content. Whether that’s to make a sale, book a call, join an email list or something else, you always need to guide your audience to the next step so you can actually make those all-important sales.
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