A friend proudly showed off her new website yesterday. “I’ve worked on it for months – I think it looks great.”
I hear that all the time – “Looks great”, “Pretty”, “Nice graphics,” “Professional.” I don’t know what any of that really means, it’s so subjective. I think people are saying it doesn’t look like their nephew did their site.
But websites are so easy to build these days – everything looks pretty. And frankly, I wish my nephew did my site – he knows about 10 times more than I’ll ever know about WordPress.
Websites aren’t supposed to look pretty.
It’s nice if they do. It’s really nice if they don’t assault with a crazy color scheme or flashy graphics that never load. But looking professional isn’t the point. A good looking site can attract your reader’s attention and maintain their gaze – for a moment.
Then you have less then 10 seconds to prove your site is interesting.
Why should anyone invest time reading your copy?
My friend’s site was all about her as an artist. She tried to make the argument that she was her product. I didn’t buy it. Unless you’re a top-selling artist, photographer, editor, pizza maker – you have to show your reader why you matter.
Irrelevancy is your default.
So how can you demonstrate your value to your reader?
Stop talking about yourself.
Focus on your prospect’s problems.
I did some work recently with an animal communicator. She’s booked solid for a full year. She says she just did it through referrals. Sounds easy enough, but her reputation was built over 15 years of doing speaking gigs, writing, and working with clients. When she meets someone she doesn’t talk about how incredibly intuitive she is. She focuses on what her client is asking for, and apparently she gets great results.
A great reputation will gain you respect, but it won’t guarantee clients or income. Establishing yourself as an expert is step #1 – not the final outcome.
Clients will always want to hear more about the results you’ll help them achieve then how effective you are. That’s why Angie’s List and Amazon reviews are so popular. People are more ready to believe their peers and colleagues who are struggling with the same problem. Results for your client will always speak louder than words.
7 Deadly Mistakes of Website Content
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