The number one rule about creating marketing materials for professional services businesses

How would you feel if you met someone for the first time and all they spoke about was themselves? Would it make you want to engage with them more?

This situation is similar to how professional services businesses market their offerings – the vast majority of us are not writing our marketing materials in the most effective way.

The problem is that we tend to centre the content around ourselves instead of our potential clients.

As experts it can be tempting to dive right into talking about your credibility and past experience – which is understandable because your whole business is built around selling expertise. However, this is not the best way to attract clients.

People don’t care about your business

Although it’s a bit disheartening, people (especially strangers) don't care about our businesses or service offerings as much as we like to believe. They really only care about what we can do for them – so we must play to that.

Alongside this, we are up against an ever-increasing battle to get the attention of our target audience.

There are just too many distractions in the digital world and people's attention spans are shrinking – making it very easy to ignore companies' marketing efforts.

The mindset shift

The solution to this problem calls for a mindset shift. Instead of writing your marketing materials from your perspective, put your clients first and frame your offering from their perspective.

Not only will this make your content more engaging, but you will stand out from the majority of your competitors who focus on themselves and how great they are.

Of course it's important to note that the first step is to actually pick an ideal client to target. Only once you have a particular person in mind, will you be able to write content and create marketing materials that appeal to them.

Forget your peers and competitors

It’s worth mentioning that people often look to their peers or competitors for inspiration when it comes to creating marketing materials – but this is the wrong approach to take.

It doesn't matter what your peers or competitors think, only the opinions of your potential clients are important when it comes to making sales.

Remember, most of your competitors are not writing their marketing materials in the best way, so referring to them will not do you any favours.

As a side note, the goal is to stand out from your competitors, not be more like them. So avoid copying the style or language they use. Their websites probably aren't generating many leads anyway.

But how do we actually create marketing materials from the clients’ perspective?

Simply put, you need to talk less about yourself and more about your ideal clients’ situation and struggles.

Remember, the goal is to make things easy to digest and as interesting for them as possible, so we must talk about subjects that are important to them.

As a rule of thumb, here is a good content outline to follow for your marketing materials:

  1. Summarise your ideal clients’ problem
  2. Then talk about how they should approach solving that problem
  3. Next mention the specific solution you provide to the problem (your service offering)
  4. End with why you are best placed to deliver that solution

As you can see from this framework, we should only talk about ourselves once we have mentioned the ideal clients’ problem and how they could go about solving it.

The objective is to demonstrate empathy for their situation and also communicate that you understand their problem. If you can articulate a client’s problem better than they can, they are likely to assume you know the solution.

In addition, writing content from the clients’ perspective involves switching up the language. Use fewer instances of "I" or "we", and instead swap them for "you" or the role title of your ideal client e.g. “finance directors”. This simple change alone can drastically improve the effectiveness of your marketing materials.

Conclusion and action point

So although it may seem counter intuitive, focusing the content of your marketing materials on your ideal clients instead of yourself is actually the best way to get their attention and build trust.

Once you do this, it significantly increases your chances getting them to enquire about your services and ultimately become paying clients.

For today’s action point, set aside an hour in your schedule to go through your website and/or other marketing materials and change the perspective to be focused on the clients you are trying to attract.