Developing your marketing message to grow your business is so critical that if you do everything right but get this one element wrong, you will confuse your audience and find yourself floundering in every direction but the right one. Here are the steps to build the right message.

Who’s hearing it anyway?

The first rule of any marketing is to know who you’re aiming your message at. If you don’t know or can’t pinpoint a single large group of similar minded people, then you can’t build an effective message for them.

So stop telling people in your elevator speech (the short introduction that you do at business meetings) that you work with everyone and start narrowing down a group of people who have a homogeneous reason for being together (ie. Entrepreneurs, dentists, new moms, Realtors etc.)

Why should I care what you say?

Why anyone would care about a message is because it provides a solution or an insight into a person’s problem (pain).  Having said that, even if your message is about your pain but that pain is not in any way related to theirs, your message is dead in the water.  This is like that girlfriend who is always talking about her problems but never ever once asks about yours. It’s interesting to play voyeur into her life and listen for a short while but you quickly tire and lose interest. You are much more into meeting friends who want to talk about you and your problems along with theirs. Don’t be the selfish girlfriend in your messaging.

Don’t assume my pain

Basing your message on your target client’s pain is aces. It’s a spot on strategy. One warning though—what if the pain that you think they have is your assumption only. An example of the wrong message based on the wrong assumption was when an ad agency kept pitching me during my time as a marketing manager, a campaign that was built around an awareness problem when we had almost 100% awareness in the market! Clearly their wrong assumption was not only bad research on their part but also teed us off to no end because it wasn’t even positioned as an assumption.  The lesson for you in this is to ask ask and ask again your ideal clients what their pain with respect to your expertise is.  Never assume and always use their words when describing the pain—not yours.

Change me over

As a client in pain, I’m interested in how you can help me—but even more important than that, I’m interested in how you’re going to change my life and my business. This transformation piece is really key in how you convince people to work with you.  Here’s my elevator pitch that speaks to this—

“I help overwhelmed and exhausted entrepreneurs make a marketing plan to get 1 new client a month”

That’s the transformation-taking clients from presumably no clients a month to 1 every month.

From the elevator to the net

Your message is so important that it’s the one thing that is consistent between your elevator pitch to your website copy to your keynote title to your blog content.  It is the same captivating transformation message that you broadcast on all frequencies and channels 24/7 constantly.

Figure out the right messaging—talk in their words about your client’s pain and how you transform lives and you’ll become a marketing gold medal winner who will attract clients like cheesecake to PMS’ers.

Need more chicken soup for your biz? Follow me on Twitter, friend me on Facebook or connect with me on LinkedIn –and let’s talk!