For the latest Smart Cookies Breakfast Club, author, coach and all-round content superstar Sonja Nisson shared her top tips on getting your message across in a way that connects.
Sonja has been helping experts to unlock, shape and communicate their ideas for over 20 years. She spoke all about the role of trust, the curse of knowledge, the value of listening and the surprising secrets to creating valuable content that connects.
You can watch the replay below or read on for a summary.
1. Importance of trust and human connection
Sonja shares the trustworthiness equation from Charles Green’s Trusted Advisor. We often try to build reliability and credibility in our messaging, through our websites and other materials but can forget about the human element – intimacy. Follow the equation and think about trust in both the logical and emotional factors in the messaging you’re putting across.
2. Talk to people in their language
It’s so easy to get wrapped up in our products and our services and our businesses, we have to remember that our customers really don’t care as much – what they care about is themselves and their problems. So, we have to start there.
Sonja highlights how this is about deeply understanding the people that you want to serve with your message/business/product/service. Research and listening are absolutely key and from a messaging point of view.
It’s about hearing the words your customers use and reflecting those back in your messaging – in blog articles or on your website. If you want that messaging to connect, talking to people in their language is what’s going to make a difference.
3. Start with why
Marketers and business owners can be too focussed on what they do and will write all about what services and products they offer – but for content to really connect, people need to see the ‘why‘. Why those products or services matter to them, to their vision and to their world.
4. Simple, positive active language
Using examples from Vote Leave and the Remain Brexit campaign, Sonja demonstrated the importance of using simple, active language that the majority of people can understand. Simplifying is not dumbing down – but using simple positive and active language will help your message land better. Avoid getting caught up with industry-specific jargon or terms but research the language your audience use.
5. Repeat Repeat Repeat
Business owners, especially in creative industries, can constantly want to recreate and do new things. But, important messages (such as your ‘why’) should be repeated often. Say it again and again and again – in many different ways and many different formats, but ensure that message is always at the heart of what you do.
6. Help don’t sell
Sonja shares her mantra from Valuable Content: Help, don’t sell, Talk, don’t yell, Show don’t tell. Don’t go for the hard sell, but understand and respond to the challenges of your audience. Talk to your customers in their own language (emotionally and logically) – don’t yell at them with sales messages. Demonstrate the power of the ideas you have through customer stories and other pieces of content.
Why not join us at our next Smart Cookies Breakfast Club session? Bitesize chunks of top quality content to help you take your business to the next level. All before 9 am!