When you start your own business you have to be pretty confident.
You have to believe in your idea. You have to do your research. And you have to put in the hours to get the business running smoothly.
At some point in all of this you have to make some decisions about how you will market your business image. Will your marketing come from “me” (yourself) or “we” (or a team)?
You know that you’re the only one making all the wheels turn behind the scenes but do you want your clients to know that?
There are benefits and challenges to both approaches but your answer to “we” vs “me” question can dictate how your target market will engage with your business.
When I started my copywriting business, I came from a corporate marketing background. My initial instinct was to talk about “us” and “we” from day one. I wanted to look successful and professional and I assumed that an implied team gave me that image.
But once I started building my client base I switched my marketing back to “me”. And here’s why…
Social media marketing has changed everything
Social media has introduced an amazing sense of connection into the world of marketing. We no longer have to jump through expensive hoops to talk to our customers or our industry partners and competitors for that matter.
As I started to use social media, I realised that I got a lot more engagement from my target market when I was myself, when I didn’t pretend to be a faceless organisation.
By building transparency into my business image my clients felt they got to know me. When I write their copy or review their worksheet on the forum they aren’t getting “someone on the team”; they are getting the sum of my marketing experience and knowledge.
This connection, amongst other things, has led to my business having a growing group of champions who make social media a very powerful part of my marketing.
The advantages of “Me”
When you don’t pretend to have a team of human resources (that don’t exist) you:
- Add a very personal element to your product or service that could be what makes you unique
- Operate in a more transparent fashion which can be rewarded with more trust
- Open the door to developing closer relationships with your customers (and stronger, closer relationships lead to more loyal customers with a much higher ‘lifetime value’)
- Instinctively communicate in a friendlier, less formal tone
The other possibility is to stick with “we” right from day one and there can be some benefits to this.
The advantages of “We”
By implying that you have a team of resources in your business you:
- Can present a lower risk to your customers because:
- Your business will appear successful enough to have “staff”
- Your customers get a sense of security from the idea of shared responsibility
- A team image is especially valuable if you need to respond quickly
- Are making a looking forward statement about your plans for your business
So which is better?
This is a question that depends on your product or service; the expectations of your target market and the consequences if they find out you’re faking it.
Is either option more professional marketing? I don’t think so.
When you are building business relationships, authenticity is the key.
If your greatest asset is YOU, don’t be afraid to show yourself off in your marketing. Promote your personal service and unique experience, as it could just be your competitive advantage. I have learnt that sometimes showing your vulnerabilities is a strength that your market embraces.
Whichever path you choose: be consistent and work the angle to your advantage.
So now it’s over to you. Did you choose “we” or “me” when you started your business? Or which do you respond to when you are selecting a provider to work with?
Belinda (AKA The Copy Detective)