Why conversational copy is the perfect fit for your high-trust, relationship-based business.

Conversational copywriting for service-based businesses

What do I mean by a “high-trust, relationship-based business”?

Here are a few examples…

You’re a life coach or business coach, consultant, freelancer, speaker, trainer, naturopath, yoga or fitness instructor, interior decorator or tree surgeon… and so on.

If your work brings you into direct contact with your customers and clients, consider yourself included.

Consider yourself excluded if you sell coffee mugs, shampoo, bicycles and most of the other stuff in and around your home.

There’s a key difference here.

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Why you lost your ability to write like a real person, and how you can get it back.

Children writing at school

While we’re still just toddlers, we start to talk.

That’s an amazing thing.

Our young minds figure out the meaning of those sounds adults are making around us. More amazing still, we somehow figure out some rudimentary rules of grammar.

Nobody taught us, but we figured it out. The sounds. The words. The basic framework that allows us to put those words into sentences that can be understood by others.

Sure, our first few tries at talking weren’t very sophisticated.

But we got the hang of it soon enough.

And before too long, we became more or less fluent in the spoken word.

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You can’t shout your way into people’s hearts.

Don't shout when having a conversation

Desperate marketers resort to cranking up the volume in their advertising.

If they’re not getting the results they want, they shout louder and more often, and in more places.

But, as they eventually discover to their cost, shouting louder doesn’t work.

It’s almost as if they’re saying, “Hey people, it seems you’re not hearing what I’m telling you… so I’m going to have to shout louder!!!”

But the problem isn’t that they aren’t being loud enough. Their problem is that they’re pitching the wrong message.

A message people don’t want to hear.

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How do you take your protein? And other assumption-bending questions – with Seth Godin.

In conversation with Seth Godin
Photo: Jill Greenberg

In this post I get to interview Seth Godin… author of 18 bestselling books, consummate marketer, entrepreneur, teacher and a good person.

That question about the protein.

Almost 20 years ago now Seth and I were booked to speak at the same event. We were both in town the evening before and went for dinner together.

As I studied the menu, Seth looked over and asked, “How do you take your protein?”

I remember that question because it stopped me dead in my tracks. I had to pause, unpack the meaning behind the question and think.

None of that would have happened if Seth has simply asked me, “Are you a vegetarian?”

If he’s asked me that, I’d have said no. Zero thought or reflection required.

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Funny thing… but it takes me longer to write in a conversational voice.

Conversational copy rewrites

Who would have thought it?

You’d think that writing conversationally would just roll off the tongue… like talking.

And it does.

That’s the trouble.

Yes, it’s trouble.

Because if you actually record what you say in conversation, and then transcribe it, it’s a mess.

Lost for the right words. Clumsy sentences. Repeating yourself. Using ten words when two would do the job just as well.

This, of course, is doubly true if you’re having a conversation with friends over multiple rounds of drinks.

Like I said. A mess.

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Word-of-mouth marketing is huge, and it’s fueled by conversation.

Word of mouth conversation

According to Forrester Research, there are approximately 500 billion word-of-mouth impressions created every day on social media.

All that social activity has a powerful impact on the economy overall.

In fact, management consultancy McKinsey and Company estimates that TWO-THIRDS of the US economy is now driven by word of mouth.

Hang on…

Let’s pause and take another look at those numbers, because they’re huge.

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