You checked your email this morning the same as you do every morning. Two emails stand out. They are both in reply to information that you requested on a product that you need. Your usual supplier has gone out of business due to poor marketing decisions. This has forced you to find a different business to do business with.
The first one reads like this.
Hey Business Guy,
Your business needs to do business with my business. I have been in business for 10 years. I have navigated the business of doing business with businesses such as yours. My business deserves the opportunity to show your business how well we do business.
Your desire to read fades away. You realize that you don’t care to do business with a business that conducts business like this.
The second one has a headline that reads:
Your Company Deserves to be Profitable
You’re paying attention now. You click to open and proceed to read.
Dear Company Owner/Purchaser,
As your fiscal year comes to a close you will be reviewing your books to find areas that may need improvement. Will you be looking for a way to maximize profit in the next fiscal year? What if this email contained a way to guarantee an increase in profit? Would you continue reading?
Yes, of course you would continue to read. You would find that they have the product that you are looking for. The price is 15% cheaper than your usual supplier. You know, the one out of business for poor marketing decisions. Before you find out that it is 15% cheaper, you find out all about the product. Not only does it have the same features, it is better. It has every benefit as the original and more. Near the end of the email you have a choice. You have the option to buy now or request more information. After reading all the benefits, the features, the price and the guarantee, you are ready to buy. But, this is your company and reviewing all the information is the wisest option. You fill out the form to receive the brochure with more information. You are confident you have made the right decision for your company.
What are the differences between the two? It is only the opening sentences. But, the opening is all it takes to get the “keep reading” attitude or the “been there done that” attitude. The first email appealed to their needs and wants and the second appealed to yours. A company is like a person in the sense that they put their needs first when purchasing. Emails that bark orders and demand benefits get read far less than the ones that take orders and offer benefits.
You will notice that the first half of this article uses the word “Business”, to an annoying extent. The second half of the article uses the word “Company”, for good reason. As the owner it is a source of pride to call it your “Company”. “Business” doesn’t do it justice. Your company does business with other companies and consumers.
If you had these two emails in front of you, you would see one wild similarity. These two emails are from the same company. There are two owners of that company. One of them thought that their knowledge and company pride could sell anything. The other knew that hiring a copywriter to persuasively pitch the product would increase their sales, and help increase profits for the next fiscal year. Which owner made the correct marketing decision?