Do you know what your prospects are really thinking?

Want to know a secret?

When prospective buyers visit your website, they are looking for more than just their desired product or service.

The secret is, they’re looking for reasons to NOT buy from you.

Yes, that’s right. Your prospects – no matter how motivated they are – are coming to the virtual table with a chip on their shoulder. Like the person burned by too many bad dates (you dated that person too?) they want you to prove to them how you’re not just like all the others.

But the problem is, just like in the dating example, you have no idea what the “others” did to your prospect. She’s not coming to you and saying, “Here’s what happened to me – and I’m expecting you to pull the same stuff.” But here’s what she could be thinking…

…The last PR company I worked with took my 10K and didn’t generate a dime in buzz. How can you help me?

…The last time I bought something online, the package arrived late – and the company overcharged me for shipping. Will you do the same thing?

…The last time I hired a writer, he copied an article from Wikipedia and tried to pass it off as original content. How do I know that I’ll get what I’m promised?

…These prices seem high. Are your services really worth it, or are you overpriced?

Think about your own buying behavior. Do you jump into a new purchase willy-nilly, buying from the first vendor in the search results? Or do you carefully compare Websites, send exploratory emails and check reviews so you can work with the right company?

(As a side note, that’s why well-written persuasive content is so important, It’s more than just “getting a good ranking.” It’s providing a fantastic customer experience through the power of the written word.)

Here’s what this means to your online content.

You have to overcome those objections within your copy and show the value of working with you. Rather than waiting for your prospect to bring up every objection they have (guess what – they won’t,) you have to face the known issues head-on and overcome them. No, that doesn’t mean hammering your prospect over the head with how cool you are. It means recognizing that your prospects need to be 100% assured of the value they’ll receive when they work with you.

Plus, if you don’t overcome these objections immediately in your Web copy, you may not get a second chance.

For instance, Domino Pizza’s old campaign of “Pizza in 30 minutes or less” was perfect for thousands of hungry pizza-lovers anxious for immediate-gratification food.

The U.S. Post Office’s campaign of “Celebrating a simpler way to ship” helps promote their online services and overcome the objection of “Will I have to stand in line for hours at the Post Office?”

Or FedEx’s, “When it absolutely, positively has to be there overnight…guaranteed” – which is important for businesses who need on-time, trackable shipping.

How do you “figure out the known issues” if you don’t know exactly what your prospect is thinking? Simple. Do your homework.

  • Talk to your sales team. These are the folks “in the trenches” who hear exactly what’s going on – and who overcome objections every time they talk to a new prospect. Learn what their clients are worried about, what’s important to them, and how your service has exceeded their expectations.
  • Talk to your customers. Often times, testimonials can help tease out what objections the person had before they worked with you. For instance, customers will tell stories like, “When I worked with XYZ company, it took one or two days before they would answer my email. When I work with you, I get an immediate response.” See there? A sentence like, “We’ll return your email within one business day, guaranteed” perfectly overcomes the objection.
  • Review competitng sites. Sometimes, your competition really does get it right. Comb through their copy and see if they’ve overcome objections that your site doesn’t address. Does your competition talk about how many years of experience their consultants have? Does your competition mention a “no hassle money back guarantee?”  Do they include customer reviews touting their superior service? Although it’s not a smart idea to copy your competition (after all, you can do better,) you can learn from them. And in doing so, give your prospects the exact information they need.

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