The Two-Word Phrase That’s Costing You Customers

Hello, this is Clay Collins. Welcome to this episode of the marketing show. Today, we’re going to be talking about the two-word mistake that costs you thousands upon thousands of dollars. It’s a mistake I see people making all the time. It hurts their business and it’s something that can be easily, and I mean easily avoided and it makes me infuriated every single time I see it.

So, what is the huge mistake? Well, the huge mistake is…

To label your prospect or the person who’s reading your copy by their role in your business. So, I see all the time. People will say things, for example, in a blog post, like, “I’d like to take the time to thank you, the reader, for reading this,” or, “for doing X, Y, or Z.”

See, this refrain, someone’s reading this, doo-du-doo-du-doo, they’re having this personal connection with you. You are referring to them as you. You’re talking to them like they’re in the room with you, and all of the sudden, you say that they’re reader. You label them by their role in your business and you let them know that they are one of a lot of people who’s reading that and you break that personal connection.

Another example, “I really want you, the customer, to know how important this is.” Anyway, by doing this, you hurt yourself in a lot of ways. First and foremost, you break…you just absolutely shock their cognitive frame and you break that personal connection. It’s horrible, right? They – they are in a mindset of being in a room with you, really connecting with you, and all of the sudden, you say, “You know what, you were the reader, right? You’re the customer? You are a person who this role in my business and that’s why I care about this. And that’s why I’m talking to you.”

Second, you define them by their role in your business. You’re saying, “I’m only interested in you insofar, as you are part of my master scheme and my master plot.” And this is just bad. You don’t want to do that.

Third, you let them know that they are one of just many people whose reading that piece of text or one of many people who’s watching that video. So, again, the written word or video, but particularly the written word, has the ability to take people to places that they normally don’t go. And if you’re really connecting with your prospect emotionally and you’re speaking to them in a way that’s moving them, and all of the sudden, you say, “Hey, you’re the reader, right? You are the customer? This is the label that I use to think about you, right?” You’ve really just broken that and you let them know that you are just speaking to a whole bunch of people. You’re not speaking directly to them and they’re going to feel like it’s less applicable to them.

So, in closing, I want to tell you when you are correct in writing copy that acknowledges that they are part of the group. You want to do that when there’s a limited availability for something and you’re asking for the sale, right? So, let’s say you’re offering a coaching program, or you’re offering a special boot camp, or there’s something where, maybe there’s only 50 spots, maybe there’s only 100 spots, maybe there’s only 1,000 spots and your list is like, maybe a million, right?

In that context, you might want to write something and say, “As one of the 200,000 people on my emailing list, I want you to know that there are only 10 spots available.” But you only do that at the end of the launch when you’re asking for the sale and when you want people to know that there is limited availability and that’s why they should act. And that is the only time that you should speak to people as if they are one of many people that’s receiving your message.

Anyway, I hope this has been helpful. Don’t let me see you doing this on your blog or in your copy. Don’t refer to people as their role in your business. Anyway, again, I hope this has been helpful. And I’ll speak to you soon.

Thanks for watching the marketing show and take care.

  • Nicely done.

    • Dude, I totally thought your site was going to be a Penny Stock newsletter.

  • Awesome! Made some changes to a blog post going out today (while halfway through your video) :-). Thanks, as always.

    • Nice. I’m glad you too action. Marketing is not a spectator sport.

  • plbenson

    Thank you so much! I’ve just shared on all my Social Media!
    Phillis Benson

  • Thank you so much! I’ve just shared on all my Social Media!
    Phillis Benson

  • Dude, this is an awesome video. Yes, this is a huge relationship breaker. You sure as hell wouldn’t insert those labels in a one-on-one live conversation.

  • MayorKarla

    great tip on keeping the message personal and connected – thanks!

    • Hey . . . are you really a Mayor? Of what city?

  • Weeksvaca

    nice work thank you

  • When I kept talking about “girlfriends” to my girlfriends they kept getting mad. Now I know. 😉

    • Janet

      I bet when Clay talks about his girlfriend, girls everywhere get mad too! hahaha

      • Lulz… what’s funny about that is that it’s totally the exact same
        principles at work and just as big (if not worse) of a mistake.

    • This is hilarious. And what?!?! parallels between marketing and dating? Who knew (other than the PUA community, which I’m not a part of)?

      • Homophobia prevents the analogy from going… uh, “all the way” for most
        people, I think. What marketers hope ends in consummation, customer fear
        will end with them just getting fucked.

  • excellent, Clay; as usual.

  • Janet

    Great job. Thank you for leading us and giving us examples of excellent marketing. You are truly a formidable leader in your space.

    • That’s a huge compliment, Janet. Thank you. I try 🙂

  • You absolutely nailed it! I unsubscribed from a newsletter one day and received a “sorry to see you go” message. Within the message it informed me I was unsubscribing from the Prospects List. While the marketer may think of us in a certain role, I agree, we definitely don’t want to see it in writing. Thanks for the great reminder!

  • Marshall Sontag

    Clay, on your email signup form: “Often, they are not archived and are available to subscribers only for a short time.” I’m a Subscriber??? You bastard! 😉

  • The more I think about it, the dumber those words look.
    Not only does it destroy the relationship, it makes the writer look like an idiot for overstating the obvious.
    Keep up the great work!

    • Yeah . . . I think it’s a trend started by Dear Abby or something back in the day. It’s an innocent mistake, but a costly one.

  • Svetlana

    Thanks for this show, Clay.

    Is it wise to let people in your list know how many subscribers read your messages?

    For example:

    Some email marketing providers put this information in the bottom of the newsletter by default: “This email was sent to XXXXXX people”

    • Depends. I would advise using social proof elements to encourage people to sign up for your mailing list, but not include them in the email itself, at least under most circumstances (again, there are some times when it’s good to mention how many people are getting an email in the email itself).

      • Svetlana

        Thank you for your reply, Clay!
        I really enjoy your shows.

  • Imaginen

    So that’s how you do it…make us out here feel special…:) That’s one of the qualities my partners and I have talked about when we first “met” you on-lin and signed up for your marketing program…”It was like he was speaking to us!”…Thanks for sharing your secrets…

    • I hope all the personalized attention, and time spent together on mentorship calls makes you feel special :-). There’s a huge difference once someone’s inside The Marketing Program. I bust my ass for you once you’re inside. I wish I had the time and resources to help everyone, but I don’t, so you come first.

  • Anne Rein

    I really enjoy your content, but the quality of the streaming experience is very poor. I don’t know how much control you have over that at your end, but whatever you can do will be appreciated. Many Thanks!

    • Svetlana

      Ann, I don’t know why you encounter such problems.
      Whenever I watch these episodes, the quality is perfect.

      May be there is something wrong with your Internet connection?
      Best regards.