“It takes 10,000 hours to become an expert!”
I’m sure that if you’ve been running a business online, you’ve probably heard that saw at least a few times.
The idea, of course, is that by putting in a brobdingnangian number of hours practicing a skill, you get to be better than practically anyone else in the world at that skill.
At least marginally.
But whatever you do, don’t expect anyone to be impressed when you shout about your expertise.
Communicating to prospects from a place of expertise can make then LESS likely to say “YES” to your offer. In fact, they may never really notice it at all!
Your prospects don’t enjoy feeling stupid.
They expect you to know what you’re doing, of course. So I’m not suggesting that you start taking people’s cash without any idea of how to deliver results (although I’m still pretty skeptical about this 10,000 hours thing… if you decide to try it, let me know how it goes.)
What I AM suggesting, though, is to be aware of HOW you communicate your expertise to your buyers.
After all, they don’t know what YOU know.
Industry terms and concepts that might be deeply entrenched in your mind might be completely foreign to your buyers (or a segment of those buyers).
So when you talk to them purely from a place of expertise (“LOOK HOW MUCH I KNOW!!!”), you might be talking way over your intended buyers’ heads.
Here’s a quick example:
The Masterful Motor Skills Coach
I worked with a talented motor skills coach who possessed VAST knowledge of human anatomy and movement. He caught one of my IG lives and asked if I could help determine why his marketing wasn’t connecting.
A quick scan of his marketing materials revealed the disconnect.
He was communicating as if he were talking to a fellow motor skills coach. It was all very clinical, with unexplained phrases like “gravitational problem-solving,” “specific inputs,” and “dynamic postural control.”
But in the reader’s mind, it came across as “blah blah blah.”
No idea what this guy’s talking about. Better keep moving.
See, the people who needed this guy the most weren’t other motor skills coaches. They were (and are) people who are in pain or have limited joint movement, and couldn’t find lasting relief!
“Dynamic postural control” is an ELEMENT of that relief in my client’s practice… but that’s something to introduce gradually using analogies and physical demonstrations. It’s not something to plop in front of someone who has never heard the phrase before.
(BTW, if you want to see how we transformed his messaging to dial down the “expert-speak” and create a deep emotional connection, check out Mejor Strength’s new “about” copy)
Empathy translates your expertise into value.
I’m not talking about hiding your expertise here.
What I’m talking about is translating your knowledge by understanding where your buyers are coming into the conversation, and meeting them on that level so you can educate and elevate them.
I talked about this equation in another article about experts:
Material Expertise + Expert Status = The Expert You’re Looking For
Material expertise is the subject matter knowledge you (hopefully) already possess.
Expert status is knowing your audience better than they know themselves, and showing that you “get” them better than your competitors.
One of the best ways to show that you “get” them is to talk to them on their level.
Get real about your own story. Show them what life was like before you discovered your solution. They’ll recognize details from your story in their own lives, and they’ll instantly feel connected to you.
Stalk follow your best clients (or prospects, if you’re just ramping up) on social media. Learn how they talk. How do they describe their frustrations? What words and phrases keep coming up that you could weave into your messaging to show them you’re on their side?
It’s not that hard.
But your competitors won’t do it.
So maybe it’s worth a little extra effort to outshine those competitors and win over clients for life.
Don’t know where to start simplifying your marketing message?
It can be overwhelming for sure… especially if you don’t consider yourself a writer.
But you’ve got an expert on your side!
In the Loud and Clear Core Message Clarity 4-week Program, a small group of entrepreneurs will dive into their ideal clients’ worlds, discover their marketing “sweet spots,” and take the “sales” out of their sales conversations.
If that sounds like a relief, check out the Loud and Clear program now – we start on the first Saturday of every month.