Browsed by
Tag: copywriting

Niche vs. Ideal Client – Which Is Better to Grow Your Business?

Niche vs. Ideal Client – Which Is Better to Grow Your Business?

Niche and Ideal Client are buzzwords among business owners, right? And in many cases, they’re used interchangeably.

But as I explained in a recent post, “3 Reasons Your Ideal Client—Not Your Target Market or Niche—Is a Cornerstone of Building Your Love-Based Business,” there’s a huge difference between niche and ideal client.

The distinction is an important one, and that’s why I wanted to revisit the topic today.

First of all, let’s recap. What IS the difference between niche and ideal client?

A niche is a subsection of a target market. A target market is a broad demographic of people. To really dial in on what this means in terms of marketing, let’s look at the definition of demographic: “a particular sector of a population.”

Typically when we talk about demographics, we’re talking about external factors like age, career type, income, or location.

So if your target market was 35-year-old women looking for a business opportunity, then you’d dial in even deeper to find your niche; for example, your niche may be 35-year-old stay-at-home mothers looking for a business opportunity.

An ideal client takes the concept of a niche even deeper. The concept is based on internal factors, like values, desires, and hopes.

When we talk about an ideal client, we’re talking about a specific person, what motivates and inspires her, and what she truly wants at her core.

Since we’re going deeper, let’s drill down with 35-year-old mother example.

Here’s what we have so far:

Target market: women looking for a business opportunity.

Niche: stay-at-home moms looking for a business opportunity.

Right away, I can think of two distinct ideal client groups in this niche.

Ideal Client Group One: A woman who wants this business opportunity not because of money (she has a partner or another source of income that funds her family and her life), but because she feels like she’s losing herself in the roles of wife and mother. She feels guilty for thinking, “Is this all there is?” especially when her neighbor, a mom with a full-time job, tells her how lucky she is that she’s able to stay home with the kids. This ideal client needs flexibility and the option to work as many or as few hours as she wants. She is very clear that being a wife and a mother come first, and she wants the time to be able to cheer at soccer games and pick up dry cleaning without stressing about her business.

Ideal Client Group Two: A woman who has found herself in a position where she needs to be the breadwinner for the family. Money absolutely IS an issue, while flexibility and number of hours required aren’t.

Take a moment to think about the pain each ideal client is going through.

Ideal Client Group One: This mom feels like she’s lost herself. She wants to get in touch with herself again, to establish her own identity separate from that of being a wife and mother. She can afford not to work (although perhaps she may want to bring in some money for “extras,” like vacations or to beef up her children’s college tuition fund), and her priority will always be her wife and mom duties.

Ideal Client Group Two: This mom feels a tremendous amount of responsibility. She wants to make money, and would love a steady source of income she can count on to put food on the table. She’s willing to work as much as possible to take care of her family.

Now, if you were the owner of a company who could offer a business opportunity to each of these ideal clients, think about how differently you’d want to market to each one, presenting your business opportunity as the solution to her pain.

Ideal Client Group One: You would position your business opportunity as a way to do her own “thing,” to enjoy the rewards of being a business owner while still having the time and flexibility to be an attentive wife and mother.

Ideal Client Group Two: You would position your business opportunity as a way to make consistent money, starting right away, so she can put food on the table and pay the bills.

So now you understand why knowing the difference between ideal client and niche is so important!

But which one is better to grow your business?

I’m a big believer that the answer is ideal clients.

I don’t feel like niche markets or target markets go deep enough.

Let’s go back to our example. If you market to your niche—stay-at-home moms looking for a business opportunity—you may do okay. Your marketing may resonate with some of the stay-at-home moms out there, whatever their situations are.

But if you market to your ideal client—either the mom who wants to rediscover herself or the one who wants to support her family—then think about how much more strongly your message will resonate.

Every single piece of marketing you put out there will be that much more effective, right?

Now you may be thinking, but my company is great for both ideal clients in my niche! Why can’t I just target both?

To that, I say while yes, I’m sure you absolutely could fully support both, by trying to appeal to both with your messaging, all you’re doing is diluting your message for both groups.

Combining messages by mixing them together makes you look like a Jack of all trades—and a master of none. And, in the vast majority of cases, if they can afford it, people will prefer to work with a specialist over a generalist.

When you pick one ideal client group to focus on (also known as “picking a horse and riding it”) you’ll improve your results and your business will gain momentum—and you’ll be making a positive impact on precisely the people you’re meant to help!

If this topic resonated with you, you may want to pick up your own copy of “Love-Based Copywriting System: A Step-by-Step Process to Master Writing Copy that Attracts, Inspires and Invites (Volume 2 in the Love-Based Business Series).” You can get it here.

The Mighty Bullet Point: How to Write Love-Based Bullet Points That Inspire Your Ideal Clients to Take Action

The Mighty Bullet Point: How to Write Love-Based Bullet Points That Inspire Your Ideal Clients to Take Action

I’m going to start by making a bold statement about the mighty bullet point:

In addition to being benefit-rich, as I mentioned in The Bullet Point: The Holy Grail of Copywriting, if you want to inspire your ideal client to buy, your bullet point should come from a place of love, rather than fear.

As you know, it’s my mission to give heart-centered and conscious entrepreneurs the information they need to build their businesses in a love-based way. In fact, I wrote a whole series of books on doing just that (check out the Love-Based Copywriting books here).

It only stands to reason, then, that I believe every piece of your marketing copy should be love-based … including your bullet points.

There are two places in your copy where this is especially applicable:

  • Introductory bullet points, where you let your readers know whether they’re in the right place by touching on their pain and emotions.
  • “What-you-learn” bullet points, where you highlight specific teaching points in a benefit-rich way.

Let’s talk about each one in depth.

The Introductory Bullet Point.

Its job description: to acknowledge that you understand your ideal client’s pain, what’s keeping her up at night.

What to include: descriptions of the “outer” and “inner” problems; for example, an outer problem may be that your ideal client has spent thousands of dollars putting up a website only to find it doesn’t generate sales (outer problem), and therefore, she’s frustrated (inner problem).

How to write it in a love-based way: mention the pain, but don’t twist the knife!

What to watch out for: using the pain to make your ideal client feel worse.

Here are some examples of effective love-based introductory bullet points:

  • You spent countless resources—time, money, and energy—to write, format, launch, and market your new book, but it’s just not selling, and you’re starting to feel discouraged.
  • This whole “content marketing” strategy seems so mysterious, and with all the information out there, you’re not sure what works and what doesn’t. It’s overwhelming, isn’t it?

Do you see how each of these bullet points contains an outer problem and the resulting inner problem?

Here are some examples of those same introductory bullet points written in a fear-based or ineffective way (caution: I do not recommend using these as models!):

  • You spent countless resources—time, money, and energy—to write, format, launch, and market your new book, but it’s just not selling. Now you’re starting to think your writing is terrible, you’ll never make it as an author, and you’ll be forced to choose between working odd jobs or starving your children.
  • This whole “content marketing” strategy seems so mysterious, which is why so many people fail at it—and therefore, fail at business, too.

Do you see how each of these examples paints a pretty scary picture of the future for whoever is reading it?

The What-You-Learn Bullet Point.

Its job description: to give your ideal client a taste of what she will learn, and how that will benefit her: how her life will change as a result of taking action on the offer you’re presenting.

What to include: a specific-yet-mysterious description of a concrete teaching point, and how that teaching point will contribute to a transformation; for example, you may mention, “The most important marketing strategy you’ll ever use (this is a teaching point, and it’s mysterious because you don’t reveal what the strategy is), and how it will have ideal clients knocking on your door” (clients knocking on the door is the potential transformation).

How to write it in a love-based way: present the benefit in terms of a solution, so you’re providing hope.

What to watch out for: lack of specificity and giving away the “whole enchilada.”

Here are some examples of effective love-based what-you-learn bullet points:

  • The Number One reason many entrepreneurs feel overwhelmed when they first launch their businesses, and what to do about it, so you can enjoy running your company while still reaching your goals quickly.
  • Three mistakes you may be making as a startup coach, and how to avoid them, so you can finally attract your ideal clients and make the money and the impact about which you’re so passionate.

Do you see how these bullet points mention a specific teaching point, but don’t give away exactly what the reader will learn? Also, notice that they offer a positive solution, giving the reader hope.

Here are some examples of those same what-you-learn bullet points written in a fear-based or ineffective way (caution: I do not recommend using these as models!):

  • Why your inability to prioritize leaves you overwhelmed and burned out, and why, if you don’t change it, you’ll never enjoy running your company.
  • Three mistakes you’re making as a startup coach, and why, if you don’t nip them in the bud, you’ll never get clients, or make an impact or a good living.

Do you see how the first of these bullet points tells readers that that “Number One” reason is, and how both bullet points paint a scary picture of the reader’s future if he doesn’t learn the teaching points?

When you nail the writing of the bullet point, you’ll dramatically improve the results you get with your copywriting and marketing efforts!

If this topic resonated with you, you may want to grab your own copy of Love-Based Copywriting System: A Step-by-Step Process to Master Writing Copy that Attracts, Inspires and Invites (Volume 2 in the Love-Based Business Series).”

3 Reasons Your Mindset Is Crucial to Writing Love-Based Copy

3 Reasons Your Mindset Is Crucial to Writing Love-Based Copy

If you’ve been following my blog, you probably understand the difference between fear-based marketing and love-based marketing. But did you know that if you’re not in a love-based mindset, you’re going to have a difficult time writing great love-based copy?

Here’s why: any fear-based emotions you experience around your business and/or your marketing will shine through in your marketing and messaging, both in terms of how you feel about it, and how your customers perceive it.

For example, if you feel like marketing is slimy or arm-twisty, that will not only hold you back from writing promotional copy but also getting it out there. And if you’re experiencing marketing resistance, you may unknowingly sabotage your own efforts.

Here’s a quick recap of the difference between traditional, fear-based marketing, and love-based marketing:

Fear-based marketing often uses fear-based emotions like guilt, shame, or scarcity to get people to buy.

For example, a dentist might use fear-based marketing like this: “If you don’t come into the dentist this week, you’ll probably lose all your teeth.”

On the other hand, love-based marketing triggers love-based emotions like hope and abundance.

For example, a dentist might use love-based marketing like this: “My staff members and I have specialized in providing the best possible dental care in a stress-free environment – we keep your gums and teeth healthy for as long as you need them!”

You’ll feel good about it, your prospects will feel good about it, and your business will thrive.

That being said, here are 3 reasons mindset is crucial to writing love-based copy:

  1. It helps you feel good about what you write.

If you’re like so many of my clients, you just don’t like writing marketing copy. You feel like you’re twisting people’s arms, or being slimy somehow. But it doesn’t have to be this way.

When you write copy from a love-based mindset, you realize that you’re simply providing your potential clients or customers with a choice about whether to work with you, to experience the solution you provide.

You let them know you understand the pain they’re in, you present your product or services as the solution, and you step back and let them make that choice.

No arm twisting required.

  1. It helps you get past marketing resistance.

Marketing can be a huge trigger, because it brings up so many fear-based emotions.

Fear of failure, fear of success, fear of not earning money, not having time to spend with your family and friends, fear of “putting yourself out there,” of “owning your value,” of “selling yourself.”

Whew!

When you’re coming from a love-based mindset, though, you’re not thinking about all that “scary” stuff.

You’re thinking about how to best let your prospects know that you’re available as the solution to overcome their pain points or problems.

You’re feeling confident that your love-based copy will inspire just the right people to work with you, at precisely the right time. With this confidence comes the ability to recognize and move past marketing resistance that often results from fear-based emotions.

  1. It gives your prospects the space to make a choice, which feels so much better than pursuing them.

Love-based marketing copy is so effective when you’re writing it from a love-based mindset. Why?

Because your prospects see you as a loving individual who cares about the transformation they’re preparing to make!

Even if they don’t ultimately decide to buy from you, they’ll have seen that there’s the potential for transformation, and that they can choose a better way. They can choose to move beyond their pain. Even if they don’t do it by working with you, it’s possible that you’ve offered them a new vision for the future!

And how great is that?

If this resonates with you, you may enjoy reading the first book in my Love-Based Copywriting series, Love-Based Copywriting Method: The Philosophy Behind Writing Copy That Attracts, Inspires and Invites. It’s available in both print and most eBook formats, and you can get it here.

[Video] The Story Behind the Story — “Love-Based Copywriting Method”

[Video] The Story Behind the Story — “Love-Based Copywriting Method”

“Love-Based Copywriting Method” is the book that started the Love-Based Business movement.

Before I wrote this book, entrepreneurs didn’t have much of a choice on how they wanted to market themselves with their promotional copy (copywriting is writing marketing materials, nothing to do with putting a copyright on something or protecting intellectual property).

They could either choose to use traditional direct response copy and marketing (an example of direct response copy is those long sales letters that you scroll down forever wondering how much it is and does anyone actually read these or those emails asking you to click on a link) which meant in many cases they were using marketing tactics that felt hype-y, sales-y or inauthentic.

Or, they could choose not use direct response copy and marketing.

Of course, the problem with NOT using it is then you haven’t leveraged your marketing. When you use direct response copy, you are marketing one-to-many. Without it, you’re stuck marketing one-to-one. As you can imagine, it’s tough to grow your business that way.

But, then, in 2014, my friend Susan Liddy came out with a book called “Love-Based Marketing.” I looked at that title and thought “Love-Based Copy.” What’s the opposite of love-based copy? Well, it would be fear-based copy.

And that’s when the whole philosophy downloaded into me.

But, I’m getting a little ahead of myself — check out the whole story behind the story of “Love-Based Copywriting Method” below:

If you’re looking for a way to sell more with love, this book is the place to start. It explains the philosophy behind love-based copy so you can build your marketing and business on a solid foundation of love.

“Love-Based Copywriting Method” is available at all the major online retailers — check it out here.

The Bullet Point: The Holy Grail of Copywriting

The Bullet Point: The Holy Grail of Copywriting

If there is one element of direct response copywriting that has the potential to get people to click that “Buy Now” button, it’s the mighty bullet point.

A well-written bullet point, or set of bullet points, has the potential to close the deal faster than almost any other element in your marketing copy.

Why?

Well, because a bullet point is a tool that is quick to read, mentions the pain your ideal client is in, and your solution, all in one neat and tidy package.

Now, let’s talk about the “how” – how do you write a rockin’, take-no-prisoners bullet point?


So you probably know the difference between features and benefits, but just in case: a feature is an attribute of your product or service. A benefit is the “what’s in it for me” of that attribute.

Here’s the key: people buy benefits.

If you buy a book on copywriting, it’s not because you simply want to add to your book collection. So even though you’re buying a book, you’re not actually buying the book. Right? What you’re actually purchasing is the knowledge you will gain from reading the book, which will strengthen your copywriting skills … which will lead to more sales.

Therefore, when it comes to copywriting, it’s important to spend more time describing benefits than features.

The bullet point is the perfect place to make those benefits shine.

Now, before we take a deep dive into bullet points, let’s get really clear on the difference between features and benefits.

Features are the “what you get.” They’re the deliverables.

So let’s take the example above: a book about copywriting. The book itself is a feature. It’s what you get.

If you’re selling a car, the features may include a leather interior, a big engine, and a stereo.

If you’re selling an online program, the features may include weekly video trainings, a downloadable workbook, recordings of every session, and access to a private online forum.

A benefit, on the other hand, is the answer to the “What’s in it for me?” question. (Or, in your case, “what’s in it for the reader or potential buyer.”)

So going back to the car example, the benefit of leather interior is that it resists stains. A big engine means you get where you’re going, fast. And a nice stereo system means you can listen to awesome tunes as a soundtrack to your life.

As I mentioned above, the benefit of buying a book about copywriting is new knowledge that leads to more sales.

If you’re selling that coaching program, think about the benefits of each feature I listed:

  • Weekly video trainings provide information and accountability, so the client stays on track and receives support in implementing what he’s learning.
  • A downloadable workbook allows the client to personalize the new information so he can actually use it to create positive change.
  • Recordings of every session mean the client can access this new information any time, whether it’s relevant now or in the future.
  • The private online forum gives the client a sense of community, as well as access to support, advice and feedback, so he can get his questions answered and continue moving forward.

For every feature you list, you must also list a benefit. I like to find the benefit by asking, “So what?”

Let’s revisit that copywriting book example. The feature is a book. Sixty pages of information. So what? So that you can improve your writing skills and make more sales.

So, let’s get back to the bullet point.

Each bullet point should include a single benefit, and should either move your prospect toward pleasure or away from pain (I recommend a 70/30 ratio of toward pleasure to away from pain bullets).

If right now you’re cringing, because you’re thinking “But Michele! I’m conscious/mission driven/heart-centered! I don’t want to mention my prospects’ pain!” keep reading.

It is actually a disservice to your potential clients to ignore their pain. When you lightly touch on it, you can remind them that they have a choice about whether to remain in pain, or move away from it. (If you want to learn more about how to do this the love-based way, you can check out last week’s article, here. And if you want to learn more about the love-based copy philosophy, go here.)

Below are some examples of benefit-driven bullet points, from my “Why Isn’t My Website Making Me Any Money” sales letter. The benefits are in bold.

* An easy and effective way to transform yourself into an expert (so people will be more likely to buy from you)

[Increasing the likelihood that people will buy is moving the prospect toward pleasure.]

* 7 simple, 5-minute tweaks that add credibility to your site, so people will be more comfortable handing over their credit card and other personal information

[Making people more comfortable handing over information moves the prospect toward pleasure.]

* The one sentence you MUST add to your site if you want anyone to purchase anything from you

[People purchasing moves the prospect toward pleasure.]

* A common, VERY costly mistake you’ve probably made (or are considering making), which leads to your website not making sales (and how to avoid it)

[Making mistakes is painful! So this bullet point shows a feature that moves prospects away from pain.]

Once you’ve mastered the art of the bullet point, you’ll find that your copywriting is more effective, and you’re better able to make your biggest impact.

If this topic resonates with you, you may be interested in the second book in my Love-Based Copywriting series, “Love-Based Copywriting System: A Step-by-Step Process to Master Writing Copy That Attracts, Inspires, and Invites,” where I take this information on writing powerful bullet points even deeper. Get the book here to discover a new approach to direct response copywriting that feels good to you and to your prospects!