I don’t always live at home. Sometimes I live at my local coffee shop. It’s where I brainstorm, put ideas onto paper, kick back and read, and surf Facebook. The baristas all know me. It’s reached a point where they even spell my name correctly—a feat that some of my own family members have yet to master.
Depending on who’s working, the soundtrack might consist of cool jazz or reggae—and depending on who’s working, the baristas might break a few moves in perfect time to the music as they craft their caffeinated artwork.
Regardless of whether or not I love the soundtrack, I keep going to that coffee shop because it’s so infused with personality that I feel completely at home there.
Websites and online companies can still harness the power of personality by pulling character (and maybe even a bit of—gasp!—unprofessionalism) into their content so customers will remember the difference and keep coming back.
1. Build a Bigger Box
We’re always being told to “think outside the box,” but the truth is, with online marketing—whether you’re operating a hospitality organization, a tech company, or a knitting blog—sometimes the box can be your best friend. Find the “box” (that niche where your target audience will feel most comfortable) and expand it.
That means using language and graphics that speak to the people you want to reach. Sure, it’s not going to hit home for everyone, just like the reggae music at my second home doesn’t always speak to me. But even when you can’t hit that niche perfectly for every customer, you can show every customer that you’re not afraid to stand out. And chances are good they’ll remember the difference.
2. Content Providers for Websites Can Be Your Personal Treasure Trove
When you’re concerned with managing a business, chances are good you can’t afford to spend hours creating content to keep your website up-to-date. Contrary to popular belief, just having a well-kept website isn’t enough. According to Entrepreneur.com, you’ve got to keep gathering information on your customers and making adjustments accordingly.
A good copywriter or content provider can do that—so take advantage of their skills and talk to them about tapering your focus. Copywriters know that trying to appeal to everyone is an exercise in futility, so don’t be afraid to narrow your sights.
3. How to Avoid Going Overboard
If I walked into my favorite coffee shop and was instantly greeted by an overenthusiastic handshake, a too-happy barista, and the opening strains of a mariachi band, chances are I’d be more creeped out than enthralled—along with 90% of the other customers in the store. How can you avoid giving a similar overbearingly obsequious impression to your clients?
Sometimes your own judgement isn’t enough to figure out the subtleties of what your audience does and doesn’t want to experience. This is your moment to use that treasure trove of resources—your copywriter, friends, and peers—for opinions and ideas.
Steffani J is a freelance writer available on WriterAccess, a marketplace where clients and expert writers connect for assignments.