Going with the Flow

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One of my favorite books is “Undaunted Courage”, which is about the Lewis and Clark expedition to map and open the American West. When they came to the Missouri River they knew they had to use it to travel north. The only problem was that the river’s current flows south.

The thing that blows my mind about their journey isn’t the distance they travelled, the brutal winters they survived or the Native Americans they encountered. It’s that they physically dragged a 55 foot keelboat loaded with thousands of pounds of supplies up the Missouri against the current. For hundreds of miles. My back hurts just thinking about it.

Recently, I’ve been working with a client to create a customer journey map for their website. The copy on many business’s websites just crows about themselves. Our services. Our products. Our processes. When you talk to your customers that way you are trying to drag them upstream.

Instead, you need to focus on their mindset. Your customer is there to solve a problem they have. What they really want to hear is that you understand, that you care and that you can guide them to the solution. Effective website copy isn’t about you. It’s about them. Selling is easier when you go with the current.