Introduction

The first place anyone goes when they want to know more about your business is your website. They want to know how you help them and what you do. 

With the average attention span of most visitors lasting only a few seconds, many people leave confused or unsure what problem you solve. That’s valuable opportunities lost, and advertising spend wasted.

In today’s episode,  we will explain my formula that lets visitors quickly understand what you do and inspires them to interact with you.

To help you improve your marketing strategy, download the free brand script worksheet, which includes sections for each part of the storytelling framework we discuss in our episodes, here (or copy and paste the link below): 

demodia.com/brandscript-worksheet

To communicate clearly what you do - download our Storytelling Pitch Template.  It will show you how to use the talking points you’ve written to create the perfect elevator pitch.

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1awdCO0SQontpZSX8Gzb8dxQietcGdJArvBieeKkVdfs/edit#heading=h.3h55xh94y8o2


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Join marketing experts Simon Harvey and Daniel Kleber on Authentic Marketing, the biweekly podcast that provides proven marketing tips to improve your marketing efforts and help your business grow.

Subscribe to our biweekly episodes dropping Friday on your favourite podcast platforms like Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or any other.

Book a consultation with our Authentic Engagement coaches to help you navigate through the jungle of the business world: demodia.com/sales-marketing-review

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Episode Transcript

Simon Harvey: 

These days, the first place that anybody goes when they want to know more about your business is your website. They want to know how you help them and what you do. With the average attention span of most visitors lasting only a few seconds, many people leave confused or unsure what problem you solve. That's valuable opportunities lost and advertising spend wasted. In today's episode, I sift through the talking points in your story, and we look at how to incorporate them into your website homepage. I'll explain to you my formula and we'll see how that quickly helps visitors understand what you do and inspires them to interact with you. So let's get started. Hi there. I'm Simon Harvey, your host, and welcome to the Authentic Marketing Podcast in association with Demodia. Where we give you actionable advice that will help you create marketing that works. It's quite scary to look back now, but um, I started my career, what, almost 30 years ago now, working on websites. Looking back, you know, much of the work I did then was design and development. That's what was important then. The web was just something developing, and people were looking for creative ways to use that as a new medium. These days, well The other web's pretty much ubiquitous. It's everywhere that we look. And most of us spend numerous hours each day looking directly at websites of businesses or consuming some sort of information online. Over those last 20 or so years, the way that we use the internet has changed dramatically. And the thing is, what we expect from it has done too. You know, some years ago you went to a website And graphics was all people cared about. It was something flashy. They were looking for something interactive or something clever in there. And, you know, when you go to a website, absolutely true. Still today, the first thing that catches your attention is the design, you know, that's always the case and it remains so. You know, as a small business, that means that basically no matter how small your company is, You can't afford to be without a website generally, but even worse, you really can't afford to have a terrible looking website. I'm not saying that you need to spend thousands of dollars on hiring an expensive design agency or anything to create, you know, that bespoke look for you. But, you know, it does need to look professional. You know what I mean, definitely. Just look around at some of the sites out there and they look like, you know, niece or nephew knocked together something over the course of a weekend. That's the sort of thing I'm talking about. But, here's the thing though. Once that initial wow has subsided, and typically, you know, that's less than three seconds or so, then the real work of your website begins. This is the point where it now needs to move from that sort of wow, stop them, get them looking type point into actually convincing people. It needs to move into convince mode, as I say. And this is where the text on your site takes over. If you've got a couple of seconds to stop them and to hold them on the site, you know, you've now got, what, a further five seconds or so to explain to them what you do and convince them to read further. In my work I've learnt certainly this, that most big companies do a really bad job at this. If you go and look at any big website, you know, SAP, Microsoft, all of the big name enterprise brands, they don't have to worry about explaining to you what they do. You know, they've got the luxury of being able to fall back on their brand in the knowledge that if people are interested, then they're going to keep reading. They're going to go hunting through that site to find what they're after. But as a small business. Yeah, we really don't have that luxury. We need to be crisp and clear in explaining what we do. And we need to do that really, really quickly. I'd say if you want to go and see an example of a great website, I say don't look at big companies, go look at some of the most successful startups in the world. If you look at sites for companies like Figma, for example, ProtonVPN does a very good job of this, or something like OmniSend, They do a great job on their website. What they do is, within a few words, they very clearly explain something that their audience wants, and then they go on to explain how they solve a specific problem for that group. So It's not actually as difficult as you may think to do that. With a brand script you've got all the pieces that you need set out in front of you ready to go. I think it's time now then probably maybe we should go over and have a chat with Daniel and I'll explain to you how you can use those talking points from your story to create a clear and convincing website homepage. Hey there Daniel, welcome back.

Daniel Kleber: 

Hello Simon.

Simon Harvey: 

So, uh, we've been talking this week about websites and particularly we wanted to look at how to use storytelling within websites. So I think over this season, generally, we've been looking at how to use story to actually improve your marketing and improve your communications generally.

Daniel Kleber: 

Yes, we talked about this.

Simon Harvey: 

So I know you've been playing around a bit with websites lately. How's things going?

Daniel Kleber: 

I created the website for a friend of mine because of course I'm a professional marketing expert and I can build websites, right? Good. Um, the thing is, he told me he's getting customers, uh, or he already got some customers through the website, but, I think he could get more, you know, because I invested quite some hours in building this website, and I think we could get more out of it.

Simon Harvey: 

Okay. So, where did you start when you were building the website? What sort of guidelines did he give you? Who created what bits?

Daniel Kleber: 

Uh, well He only provided me with content in form of text and pictures and the rest he left for me, you know, like, uh, he said, yeah, build whatever you want. I'll just provide you with the content for it.

Simon Harvey: 

Okay, so he took care of the content and left you with the design and with the actual sort of the technical stuff, the layouts of the pages and all that.

Daniel Kleber: 

Exactly, yes.

Simon Harvey: 

So, you know, I think here's the thing. What would you say your job is generally? How would you describe your job from a technical perspective?

Daniel Kleber: 

Well, I help businesses to use software in order to Solved our problem of not having enough customers.

Simon Harvey: 

So, you describe yourself more as a web developer maybe then, or?

Daniel Kleber: 

Uh, more like a marketing automation specialist.

Simon Harvey: 

Okay, yeah, fair enough. So the technical side of things. Yeah.

Daniel Kleber: 

Good,

Simon Harvey: 

okay. Um, and then somebody was working on the design somewhere behind the scenes?

Daniel Kleber: 

Well, I created the design myself, but, uh, it's nothing special. It's text and picture based basically.

Simon Harvey: 

And then your friend just put together the content you said. And I think that's the thing. That's the way that so many small businesses work is it's done as these sort of small projects where you've got maybe a friend that's a graphic designer and a friend that does a bit of web development and you know, the focus really is on the design of the site and the technical parts of the site. And then somebody just. Hacks together some content that briefly describes a few little features and functions. And that's so much the problem with so many small business websites. They focus on the design and the content and no wonder things don't sell because there's nobody in the room that understands how to create the content that makes things sell. And that's, I think, where storytelling comes in, you know, people buy the products or the services that they understand the quickest, basically, that's the thing in there. So, you know, you said your friend's selling tables.

Daniel Kleber: 

Yes, he's selling tables made from epoxy hearts.

Simon Harvey: 

So, epoxy resin.

Daniel Kleber: 

Resin, yes, that's the word I was looking for.

Simon Harvey: 

Yeah, and that's the thing, you see, he's telling you what he's done, but he's not really giving you any aspirational stuff. He's not telling you how he transforms your life or telling you how having an epoxy resin table solves a specific problem for you that maybe having a normal wooden product doesn't solve in there. And so that's the thing, you know, we're always talking about storytelling. That's my favorite thing. We're talking about how you communicate clearly and You know, I've said many times before the story process starts off with something that somebody wants. They might want a table or they might want something to stand the coffee on in the living room and then there's a problem. That's the thing that's stopping them getting them what they want. So maybe actually they want something to happen. stand hot pans on or something or something that can withstand stains because there's likely to be stuff spilt on there and the problem is that most tables will stain very easily. So in the case of your friend there, problem is coffee tables stain. And the benefit of his stuff, or what he offers, is resin based tables that clean easily.

Daniel Kleber: 

It's not just about that, I mean, that's the functionality of the table, but I think this resin gives the whole table a completely different look. You know, it's not just made out of wood. I mean, wood alone is very nice to see or to have in your living room, but this resin adds some kind of glass like look to the table, you know? Mm hmm. It's not just about the functionality, but also about how the product looks.

Simon Harvey: 

So that's a different way of explaining what you want. So the want there is not just you want a coffee table, but you want a nice looking coffee table.

Daniel Kleber: 

Exactly. Yes.

Simon Harvey: 

Something along those lines, or you could look at it the other way. And you could look at the sort of the transformational side of things and say, I want something that's bright and colorful in my living room to cheer up my living room. It's dull at the moment. And I want something to cheer it up. So, you know, thinking more visually on that side, potentially.

Daniel Kleber: 

Yes.

Simon Harvey: 

So anyway, back to websites, that's what we were talking about here. So, we've got this story structure and the thing is with a website, you need to be very clear about how you put that story structure into your page. So, you know, to your friend, when people search, they're going to search for something that they want. You know, I want a bright colored coffee table or I want a coffee table that can withstand stains, something like that. And when I click on a link, the first thing that I want to see. is something that tells me that you understand what I want in there. So at the very top of the webpage, this would be something very clear that talks about what a customer wants. So you want a bright colored coffee table. So we sell bright colored coffee tables for all sizes, something along those lines, you know, that can go into your heading at the top of the page.

Daniel Kleber: 

And would you recommend to also put a picture of the product then?

Simon Harvey: 

Definitely. Yep. Yeah. You want to use visuals very clearly in the top banner in there. So relevant visuals, pictures of the coffee tables in this case, or pictures of the scenery that the patterns were inspired by, you know, I've seen quite a lot of these resin tables, particularly that have got waves and seafront type things in there that look really cool.

Daniel Kleber: 

Yeah, exactly. That's the type of stuff that he does.

Simon Harvey: 

So yeah, so you could put a picture of a seafront or something that inspires those sort of designs, definitely. But make sure it's relevant. Again, so many people just stick random pictures of people or words or something like that from some stock photo site. So make sure your picture's relevant at the top. That's definitely very key.

Daniel Kleber: 

All

Simon Harvey: 

right. So the top section of your site is going to talk about what somebody wants. The story doesn't begin until they've got a problem to solve. We said that every time. So the next part of your site is you need to talk about the problem. You know, the problem is that you want something colorful and you can't find it. Or the problem is that your coffee table is getting stained too easily. Something like that. So talk about the problem and then you can go in

Daniel Kleber: 

So something like had enough of boring wood tables.

Simon Harvey: 

Yeah, exactly, yeah. You're bored of wood tables, absolutely. Really good, you did a better job than me this time.

Daniel Kleber: 

Thanks.

Simon Harvey: 

So, once you've done that, then you can get into the next part of the site, and that's then describing who you are as the guide. So you can say, you know, I am Joe and I've been building and designing these tables for the last 20 years and you can talk about your process and you can maybe put a little video of how you go about creating these tables, you know, that's your guide section in there. So to recap, you've got the top of the site, you've got your headline and the headline is something that your customer wants. The second section in the site is going to talk about the problem and then the third section of the homepage is going to talk about you as the guide.

Daniel Kleber: 

Okay, so. The next step will be the guide, and there we describe how we do it, how we create the product, and what the product specifically can do.

Simon Harvey: 

Mm hmm. Yeah. So having done that, you've now got a customer, hopefully, that's interested. You know, they like the look of your tables in this case. They like the look of you, you know, they've seen how you do this in your workshop and they're thinking, yeah, cool, this looks really good. Now I want to buy one of these tables. But the trouble is, most people won't just click on that and buy, you know, they need some help to actually go through and buy, they need someone to explain what's going to happen. This point, there's a lot of things that are going through their mind, you know, if I click on this contact me button, they just going to get in touch with me, am I going to get my email address sold somewhere else? Am I just going to get a brochure sent through the post? You know what's actually going to happen when I click on that get in touch with me button So what we recommend now is using what we call a three step plan within your website and those three steps They're going to clearly explain this sort of process that your customer or your prospect is going to follow. So you're going to say, get in touch with me and let's talk about your table. And then that'd be step one. And then you can have a big call to action button underneath there that says, you know, contact me, get in touch with me, something like that. Step two in there. The idea of step two is it's going to explain some sort of short term quick win that this customer or prospect is going to get from that first communication or that first interaction. So having got in touch with you in step two, you can say, I'll invite you to my showroom and you can look at some previous tables that I've built. I will look at customer examples of tables that I've built before, and then you can choose your own table and, you know, I'll build it for you, I'll create it for you. And then step three is you can talk about the transformation. So you can then talk in there about the fact that you then have your own bespoke colorful coffee table that will brighten up your living room.

Daniel Kleber: 

That's step three.

Simon Harvey: 

That's step three. Yeah, exactly. So step one, immediate action. Step two, result from immediate action. And step three is sort of the transformation.

Daniel Kleber: 

Okay. And we need to list this after, after the points of the framework.

Simon Harvey: 

Yeah. After the guide section. Yeah. Where you've talked about yourself.

Daniel Kleber: 

Okay. All right. That's noted. Good. And what comes after that?

Simon Harvey: 

So after that then, the other thing that I would recommend putting into your website is what we call a sort of a secondary call to action. Secondary call to action is something for people that aren't yet ready to buy. So if they're not ready to purchase your table, maybe what you've got is, you've got an online catalog or something. Maybe you've got a PDF catalog that they can download. And so what you can do there is you could have something that says, you know, download our PDF catalogue and you ask them for an email address in order to download that catalogue. They can then download that catalogue and you've got an email address that you can then market to them so you can use that to send them a newsletter or something else after that to just keep in touch with them and hopefully sell them the table later on.

Daniel Kleber: 

Yes, okay. So, this PDF will contain what exactly?

Simon Harvey: 

Uh, it can contain whatever you like. I mean, in this case, it could just be a simple PDF with a catalogue of your friend's tables. You know, pictures of all the tables and different things that he can build.

Daniel Kleber: 

So, that's like the idea of having, like, a digital showroom to download.

Simon Harvey: 

Yeah, you could have a digital showroom or you could do something like a template that somebody can fill in. If it's more of a business sort of conversation in there, you might offer them a worksheet or something like that, that they can fill in. It's a secondary thing that gives somebody some value, gives somebody some benefits that they're going to exchange an email address for. And that's how you're then going to build your email address list for future sales.

Daniel Kleber: 

Okay. And, um, after the guide section, we have the three steps. Then we have this, uh, download offer and what comes after that?

Simon Harvey: 

So basically after that, then you can include whatever else you want to include in your site, basically. So, you know, it's the sort of the, the space at the bottom to include things like, for example, links to blog posts. If you want to include links to blog posts, any other. background information that you've got on your product or services, you know, all that sort of stuff can go right at the bottom of the page then.

Daniel Kleber: 

So that's all the rest information that you can provide.

Simon Harvey: 

Anything else that you think needs to go on that page? Yeah. We keep all the story focused stuff towards the top and anything else that's not directly influencing the storyline, we can move down the bottom below this secondary call to action.

Daniel Kleber: 

Okay. And that's the last element that we add.

Simon Harvey: 

That's basically it then the footer of your site. Yeah.

Daniel Kleber: 

Okay. Well, I guess I have a lot of work to do now.

Simon Harvey: 

Yep, so now you've got some ideas, you can go back and talk with your friend and set up a site for him.

Daniel Kleber: 

I mean the site is already set up, but I will need to, yeah, reconstruct it. Yep,

Simon Harvey: 

go and look certainly. Well, if you need anything Online, we've got the brand script document, of course, where you can go and fill in your own brand script, create your own brand script and get those talking points that we've discussed before. There is also on our website a wireframe document, and the wireframe document goes through exactly the structure that we've just talked about. It talks you through how to go through each element of creating the story onto your website and where to put all of those, how to lay out your page for the best effect.

Daniel Kleber: 

Well, that's nice. I have to go and have a look right now. All yours. Anyway, have fun then this week. Thank you very much. I hope you have a lot of fun too, Simon.

Simon Harvey: 

Will do. Catch you soon. Bye for now.

Daniel Kleber: 

Bye.

Simon Harvey: 

Thanks for the chat, Daniel. Yeah, the most important thing I think that comes out of that conversation has to be the framework. At the top of your page, tell the reader something that you do that they want. Then introduce the problem that you solve. And I've said this a thousand times before, you know, without a problem, there is no story. Once you've done that, explain how you solve their problem with your offering and show that people trust you. You know, use customer references, put some quotes, something like that into the page. Finally, give them the plan. You know, those three important steps that we've talked about many times before and call them to action. Tell them to book a meeting or something. And don't forget to repeat that call to action everywhere. Once is never enough. So if you're having challenges with your website and you want help to create a structure that works, why not join me in my authentic engagement coaching community? You can just go to wantauthentic. com slash coaching and sign up online. You'll find me and a group of other like minded small business owners all helping each other out to communicate more clearly and grow their businesses. So what's your task today? I, of course, want you to create a wireframe for your website. So a wireframe, just as a reminder, focuses on the content and the structure within your page, as opposed to the graphical elements of it. That content is the really important part. If you go to wantauthentic. com slash website hyphen wireframe So that's wantauthentic. com slash website minus wireframe, then you can download the wireframe workbook that I've created. And if you haven't got that, you'll find the link as well in the show notes. Once you've downloaded that, Then I'll start to send you a couple of emails as well. I'll guide you through the process. And of course, if you need any help, you can hit reply anytime and reach out to me. I'd love to see where you come up with. And I'm always more than happy to book a quick half hour call and just walk you through how you can improve that. So that's all for today's episode. Thanks very much for listening. And of course, if this is your first time joining us, don't forget to bookmark and rate the podcast, being part of the small business community yourself, the most valuable thing that you can do is to share this podcast with someone that you know, who runs their own company. If you found this useful, then of course they will do too. So take care and see you next time. Bye for now.