Making communications stand out in professional services isn’t always easy. It’s a crowded market, with many companies saying the same things. But when you’re selling insight and expertise, content can be the most tangible way to demonstrate how you think and show what kind of organisation you are. So it’s essential that you have a strategy that helps you show the value of your knowledge, connect with your target audiences through the language you use and show the people behind your services.
Speaking with one voice
In professional services, showcasing the value of what you do can depend on how effectively you talk about it. Although your specialism is your greatest asset, if you produce content that uses overly technical language to explain it, you can put potential clients off. And while approaching your clients’ challenges with professionalism is important, clients also want to work with people they like, and who understand them. If your communications lack warmth and sensitivity, you might come across as aloof or cold.
But creating insightful and engaging communications about your work doesn’t mean churning out content across your digital channels. Poorly targeted content won’t reach the right people, and if you stray too far from Google’s search engine quality guidelines you’ll struggle to be ranked above your competitors. To bring the different elements of your communications together and highlight the value of your work in the most effective way, your business needs a content strategy.
Showing, not telling
A good content strategy looks at what your communications do well and what could be done better. From the types of content you’re producing to your tone of voice, your content strategy helps your communications find your audience and deliver the messages that matter most. And in a sector where demonstrating your ability to win for your clients matters so much, your strategy can help you tick off the golden rule of effective content production: showing, rather than telling.
Take, for example, a blog breaking down upcoming changes to intellectual property legislation. One approach is to list the changes and explain each of them in several hundred words of complex legal language. But another option is to break down the headline changes and focus on the key implications for your target audience and including a case study to bring the potential impacts to life. The piece could be written from the perspective of a member of your team, and rather than shouting about their capabilities, it can capture attention by highlighting concrete examples of how they help clients. By showing your audience that you understand their challenges and can share clear examples of how you can help them win, you can build trust with potential clients.
Making the inaccessible accessible
A good content strategy can also solve another common pain point. Is your content getting a lot of traffic but struggling to convert it into solid leads? The problem might not lie in what you’re saying. It’s in how you’re say it. Consider these two emails. The first reads:
“Notwithstanding efforts hitherto undertaken, we will endeavour to procure the necessary documentation relevant to your case before applying it so as to reach the right conclusion for your needs”.
The second reads:
“We can get started on your case as soon as you need us and will work with you to find the right documents for the case. We’ll be in contact with you throughout the process to make sure you’re happy with the outcome.”
Awash with formal language and winding sentences, the first example comes across as unapproachable. The second, on the other hand, speaks with a confident and accessible tone. And while remaining professional, it communicates with empathy and shows clients that the business cares about their priorities. Breaking down complex phrases into digestible and accessible language shows confidence. It’s also a good way of giving your clients the assurance that you won’t hide behind overly technical terminology throughout your interactions – you’re there to help guide them through complexity to a successful outcome.
Humanising your business
Your people should be your greatest selling points. They are the ones who will work directly with clients and its their expertise that you sell. Content is a great way to bring your people to the fore and show what they will be like to work with.
From thought leadership articles to FAQs to newsletters, there are many ways to showcase your great people. Doing so not only gives prospective clients the reassurance that they’ll be working with people who understand their needs and priorities, but also gives your business opportunity the show your personality. Potential clients are looking for people that they can create productive relationships with, and by featuring your people in your communications, you’ll be showing that it’s not just the business clients are buying into – it’s your people and their skills.
Winning with an effective content strategy
Speaking confidently about the value of your professional services in a way that stands out can be challenging. But with a content strategy that helps you speak to the right people and in the right way, you can optimise your digital sales funnel, build trust and understanding with prospective clients and get ahead of your competitors. Our content strategy specialists can help you create the most effective content strategy for your business. Get in touch today and find out how we can help you win with words.