Here’s an interesting bit of copy from a company that wanted us to buy from them: “(Brand) offers personalized document management solutions to increase the efficiency of your lifecycle information management while fostering positive community engagement through every customer relationship.”
Having no idea what that meant, we moved on pretty quickly. Although we admit to saving it as a great example of a company trying too hard to sound smart.
This company may be pretty smart. But all they managed to do was make a bad impression on us. We don’t know what they do, and for a moment, we felt kind of stupid that we didn’t know what they were talking about. Were we missing out on something? Are we falling behind because we don’t have a clue what “lifecycle information management” is? Would we be more successful if we did? Should we be worried about that? Wait, there’s work piling up, better get back to it.
Here’s another bit of copy from a different company that wanted us to buy from them:
“(Brand) was built with one objective — to help you analyze and respond to the companies that are researching information on your website.”
Knowing exactly what that meant, we called them, had a good discussion, and set up a trial with the product.
This company is pretty smart. They know that a bit of plain speaking goes a long way. What’s behind their product is no doubt complex, but how many customers really need to know more than what they said to see the benefit of checking it out.
A company will always know more about their products than any customer. Customers know and expect that. They don’t want to be experts on your product so don’t talk to them like you expect them to be. If you manage to make them feel stupid, like the first company did to us, you’re not going to get anywhere with them. You’ll be better off speaking plainly.