I have worked in health care for a number of years as a Medical Office Assistant.  The health care system, as just about anyone who doesn’t live under a rock knows, is stretched and strained.  The people that work in healthcare can be overworked, tired, and unhappy, and often forget that they are dealing with people (sick and scared ones at that), not just numbers.  I would speak to these people on a daily basis to facilitate health care for our patients.  This would include hospital staff: booking clerks, ward clerks, medical records staff, nurses, etc., as well as office assistants from other doctors’ offices.  I deal with these people on the phone, typically never meeting them face to face.  All too often, they are disinclined to put themselves out even to a small degree to help me (and in turn, help our mutual patient).   I have heard sighs, I have received verbal aggression, and I have heard “that’s not my job”, even if a small effort on their part could have made a huge difference to facilitating someone getting treated with fairness and respect.  Sadly, it is all too rare that there is collegial respect and cooperation, or that desire to help.

Why does this happen?

This is my take.  Because I only speak to these people on the phone, or via email, I remain just a faceless, disembodied voice to these people.  They have no connection to me, they feel no loyalty to me, and as a result, they are all too often disinclined to put themselves out to help me (and in turn, help the patient). 

However, if I happen to meet one of these individuals socially, that can all change.  I meet a booking clerk at a boot camp, or a ward clerk at a social gathering, and suddenly, they know me.

I am no longer that faceless voice demanding something of their time, expecting something from them.  I have a name, and we have something in common that binds us, even loosely  — an exercise class, a love of red wine, we both have had cats as pets for years.  We have smiled at eat other. 

We now have a connection.  And our interactions are forever changed.  For the better.

 

Connecting with your customers via your website works on the same principle. 

You are now that faceless, voiceless presence on the internet, asking people to spend some time on your site, to get to know your business, and hopefully become your customer. 

But they don’t know you.  Why should they patronize you business?  What are you going to do for them?

Why should they care? 

Because good copy will help you to connect with your target audience on an emotional level – you make them feel SOMETHING.    It will draw them closer to getting to know who you are not only as the person behind your business, but as a real live person that they might meet at the coffee shop, chat with, or play darts with at the pub — a person they actually like.     And if they like you as a person, they will be more open to what you stand for, and they will be more likely to give a crap about what you’re selling or the service you’re offering. 

So how do you elicit emotion?  Dig deep, make throats tight, hearts stumble, elicit barks of laughter, and evoke diamond bright eyes burning with unshed torrents of your soul.

You find yourself a damn good copywriter … ahem.   Pass the tissues.  And the wine.