This week we have a very exciting interview with the lovely Kira Hug, who is the co-founder of The Copywriter Club and the co-host of The Copywriter Club Podcast! We are going to be talking all about copywriting, particularly focusing on how to get the balance between the right kind of copywriting whilst still being authentic.
KEY TAKEAWAYS COVERED IN THE PODCAST
- Finding your voice/identity. Look at your brand – Personality, Values and Advantage.
- Be honest about your personality, embrace your quirks!
- Your values (What you care about, what you fight for/against, what you stand for) will reflect in your messaging.
- Think about your advantage, what is your superpower? Everyone has one, so you need to identify yours!
- Check out what your competitors are doing – Understand how you fit into the space.
- Stand out from the crowd by talking about your quirks, they are what makes you, you!
- Being honest will help to build trust in your community and with your audience, as well as building rapport.
- You don’t have to be perfect, to be successful.
- People connect with you for lots of different reasons – give them different sides of you to relate to.
- Tell a story using chatty language in your emails – this can be the first paragraph or two to show a little bit of who you are and build that connection.
- Oversharing – there is a fine line! Decide what is important to you and if it is important for people to know more? Set those boundaries for yourself.
- Aim to build a community of people who do want to know more about you.
- Make sure you send a mixture of emails talking about you and about your audience and their problems.
- It is important to put yourself out there and let people know more about you because your audience needs to identify with you. You are allowing them to see what they want in their life, in you.
- Your audience get to know your brand personality through you sharing more of who you are, and they can then relate to your brand on a deeper level.
- Every time you share something, it should feel a little uncomfortable!
- Check in with your customers/clients – have a conversation while providing some value.
- It is important to know where you are in your sale cycle to see how much personality you should share.
- Show your customers/clients that you can relate to them and you do understand.
- Use your first sentence to really grab your reader’s attention – this could be a piece of who you are or something they can relate to.
- Signing off your emails – Best opportunity to showcase your personality. Keep it fresh and fun!
- Add your friends to your email list to keep that friendly tone.
- Your copywriting is one of the most important parts of your marketing, if you don’t have the skills, invest in a copywriter!
- There are lots of different levels of copywriters out there, with different skill levels and price points.
THE ONE THING YOU NEED TO REMEMBER ABOVE ALL ELSE…
Authenticity is key. Many of us are in crowded markets, so our personality is the only thing that can really stand out. If you are putting yourself out there and being authentic, you are going to attract people that you like, and they like you! Remember, if someone doesn’t like you, that’s cool, there are plenty of other products and services they can go and buy instead!
HIGHLIGHTS YOU SIMPLY CAN'T MISS
- An Introduction to Kira Hug – 03:40
- Being Authentic – 09:03
- Embracing your quirks – 14:02
- The “Perfect” online space – 16:32
- Connecting with your audience via copywriting – 19:25
- Oversharing! – 23:33
- Putting yourself out there – 26:26
- How to get started with sharing more! – 32:20
- Converting your customers – 40:08
- Using a copywriter for your content – 50:50
Hello and welcome to this week's episode of the podcast. This week we have an interview, and I was really excited about this one because, basically, one thing that I tell you I am not very good at is copywriting. It doesn't thrill me very much. However, one thing I am really keen on is an authentic voice. So how to get that balance between the right kind of copywriting and still be authentic, can be really, really tricky. Which is why I had Kira Hug come on to the podcast and talk about this. So let me explain who Kira is, so Kira is the co-founder of The Copywriter Club, and the co-host of The Copywriter Club podcast. She's also a conversion copywriter specialist, and has a proven driven launch copy.
So, basically, she's worked with the likes of James Wedmore and [Ritmore Reddy 00:01:25] and helped them write their copy for their launches. And as you know, I have been in some of James's programmes, and therefore, very possibly, read what Kira wrote. She helps small business owners package their weird, following her signature Weird Trifecta Framework. So what I really liked about her is that she talks about you talking in your authentic voice and showing your personality. So often, when you can think about a copywriter, it can sometimes sound and feel a little bit … almost too perfect, or just like it's been copy written. And one thing that she embraces, is she works with people to help them find their weird, to help them find the thing that makes them different.
So in this episode, we talk about what makes you different and unique. And one thing that's really interesting, that I can't wait for you to listen to, is she talks about the good and the bad, and how the bad could be used for good. Sounds weird but promise it all makes sense. And then she talks about how we connect with our audience through those things, through showing our personality. The other thing Kira talks about, which is really helpful, is to get that confidence when sharing about us.
Now, obviously you're going to share what you're comfortable with, so she's not going to sit there and say, “You have to do this and a have to do that.” However, as business owners, and as lots of you listening are solopreneurs, you are your business. So getting comfortable with showing who you are is really, really important. So, that's really helpful as well. I found it really interesting. Like I said, I am not a copywriter. It's not something I'm brilliant at. But one thing I am really passionate about is that authenticity. So, anyway, give it a listen. Let me know what you think, tag us in, I can't wait to hear what you think. So, here we go, here is Kira.
An Introduction to Kira Hug
So I am really excited today to welcome to the podcast the very lovely Kira Hug. Kira, welcome!
Hey, Teresa. Thank you for having me.
No problem. Not at all. It's really good to have you here. So, Kira, in case my audience don't know you and they've not heard of you before, tell me a bit about how you got to do what you're doing today, because it's a really fascinating subject and I'm really excited to dive in, but just tell us how you got to do what you do today.
Okay, all right. Today, I write personality-driven copy that converts. How did I get into that? I came from a marketing background, so I had worked at various startups and nonprofits, running their marketing team, promoting memberships, promoting events, and writing a lot of copy, plus doing a lot of other things. And secretly trying to start this side hustle, like many of us do, and pursuing all the interests. I started a blog about being tall, because I'm tall and I thought that could be something that stuck. But there are only so many things you can say about being tall. During that time, I got married and so I hated the wedding process. And so I started a podcast and a blog called Bridal Rebellion, and that was like a side hobby/possible business that I turned into a service and had offerings. But these ideas didn't really have the legs along the way, but it was still fun and allowed me to tap into this online world back in 2008.
And so, along the way, as I was working these marketing jobs, writing copy for my colleagues and even writing copy for people who were kind of contractors working with my startup, I had one of my friends say to me, “Why are you doing all these side hustle jobs that don't actually pay money? Why don't you just write copy? Because you're a copywriter.” And she had already hired me to write her website copy, other colleagues had have hired me to write their website copy, but it's like I couldn't see it because I was just in it, until she came to me and said, “You're a copywriter, this is your business. You're making money. Do it.”
And so from there, it was like that was the light bulb moment and I just went all in. I still continued to work at this marketing startup and kind of just eased out, I didn't take the leap, necessarily. I took a couple of months to scale down and then rev up the copywriting business that just continued to take off. And that was back in 2015, when I started, and then I went full time in April of 2016. And then, ever since then, it's just been growing that business, working on various launches, but all of it has been grounded in, “How can we write copy that reflects your personality and it stands out?” And even since then, I started a second business which is The Copywriter Club, where I get to work with other copywriters and help them embrace their personality and build businesses. So I kind of have these two different worlds that overlap, but allow me to just really kind of allow people to be more of who they are and show that in their business.
That's awesome. I have to ask a question, though, because you said it. You said you wrote a blog because you're tall, how tall are you?
I am 5'10. I said I was 5'11 the other day, and my mom seemed offended. She's like “You're not 5'11, I'm 5'11!” So I guess I'm 5'10, I'll stick with that.
Okay, cool. So, tall-ish. Yeah, I guess-
I'm tall-ish. Tall enough to start a blog about that, but I remember talking to … Danielle LaPorte, at the time, had these coaching sessions and I had hired her to have as a coach, one-off coaching session to talk about my tall blog. And I remember her saying to me, she was like, “I think you're going to run out of things to talk about.” And she was so nice about it! [inaudible 00:07:27] “Yeah, you're right.” And she was right, I ran out of things to talk about.
I love it. And also, I love the fact that you did that, then you did the wedding thing, and then you did something else, then you did something else. I feel like there are different entrepreneurs and creators in this world. Where like, for me, I literally was a really good employee and then, suddenly one day, my brain went … and then, without even knowing, I ended up having my own business and thinking, “What the hell am I doing?”
And then some people like you, who are just like, “I want to do this, and there's this opportunity here, and there's this thing here, and shall I do this?” And to just kind of have those things on the go. I don't remember doing anything when I worked. Didn't have a blog, didn't have a podcast, didn't have anything. So it was obviously kind of inbuilt in you, in terms of this was your thing.
I think so. And I think there was just my … My jobs weren't satisfying that creative need I had inside, they just weren't. I wasn't satiated, which forced me to keep jumping and taking these side digs, which, looking back, that was good but at the time it was also frustrating, being in a couple … even a couple corporate jobs where I was like, “Oh, do I really want to be here? Do I want to grow here? This isn't where I see myself.”
Yeah, yeah. Okay, so I love what you talk about, because one of the things I talk about all the time is being authentic and being yourself. And one thing that's happened in lots of industries, and it's happened in mine, is people see something that's working … So someone comes into the industry with a quirk or with a style or with a something, and they see it working and then everybody jumps on that bandwagon. And what they don't realise is it's working for that person because it's totally authentic as to who they are and they eat, sleep, breathe the way they're being. And the others aren't like that and therefore it's not that it's … It's not the thing that people like, it's the authenticity that people like.
So I love the way that you talk about celebrating things authentic and how you have kind of addressed that in authentic copies. So tell us … Explain that, how do I … ? Because, one, I don't like writing. So probably not a great start. But how do I get that out? How do I get that personality out? If I'm sat, listening, just thinking, “I don't think people know who I am.”
Well, it's funny that you don't like writing because I love your headline on your About page-
… about, “I love tea. And by tea, I mean gin.” I was like, “Well written.” Yeah, I help people figure out what makes them weird, because this is such a big struggle for all of us, and this isn't even easy for me. I oftentimes get assistance about what makes me weird too. So I've worked through this process because I've gone through an identity crisis that forced me to ask those questions like, “What am I doing? How can I show up at home and how can I show up in business?” So I've kind of worked through that personally and business-wise, but I think it really starts off with looking at three core areas of your brand and I call it your Weird Trifecta Framework.
And so these three core areas are based in your personality, your personality is a huge piece of that. And within your personality is your voice, how you talk. How you write is all about how you talk. That's where your quirks show up, what makes you unique, what makes you different, the good and the bad. And so personality isn't just the positive things, which I think we often think it is. It's like, “These are the best qualities of my personality.” Also, these are the darker qualities of your personality, these can be some of the aspects of your personality that maybe you aren't excited about, maybe you're working on them.
So I think that's where your honesty comes in, and you had mentioned earlier, you like to be honest. And so being being honest about your personality is key, and that's where most of us kind of mess up. We don't get really honest about who we are. The other two areas, one is values. So your values reflect your messaging, what you care about, what you fight for, what you fight against, what you stand for. And those really strong viewpoints, basically, it's like your why behind everything you do.
So it's personality, values. And then the third area that I focus on in the Weird Trifecta is your advantage. What is your genius? You could call it superpower, secret sauce, whatever you want to call that, but what is that for you, because everyone has it. It's really hard to see it when you do it naturally, so this is oftentimes where I focus the most time working with clients, to figure that out. And also, part of that is looking at your competition. Because sometimes you don't see your advantage until you do check out your competitors, which I'm always surprised that more business owners I talked to don't really do that well or don't pay attention to it because we want to get in our bubble. But looking at the space to understand how you fit into it, is key.
So those are the three core areas, personality, values, advantage, that we work through. And part of that process is just asking questions that pull that information out. Questions are the most powerful part of that exercise to get that information.
Let me touch on that for a little bit, because I think this is really interesting, because I love the way you talk about weird and yet … I should imagine there's some people out there going, “Well, I'm not weird,” and if they do think something's weird they're like that, “I'm not showing that! Because I don't want anyone to see that I'm weird.” I think that's really interesting, and I think what you started off by saying, in terms of personality, in terms of the voice, and those quirks, the good and bad. Honestly, I just think, “Who would want to show the bad stuff and why? Why would I want to show up some of my bad things?” And you have a great line on your site that says something like, “Even if you're a jerk and people still buy off jerks,” or something like that, which I just thought was fascinating. Tell me a bit … how do you mean? How does that work?
Yeah. I mean, there are definitely some qualities in your personality or in your life that might not be … might be a bit darker, that maybe you don't want to lead with. So there could be some … If you're like, “I have visions of stabbing people in the back!”
Probably don't do that!
Embracing your quirks
I mean, that could be a really … Through the email copy, because I would read that email, but maybe you don't lead with that. But the reason to do it is because it makes you, again, real authentic standing. You'll stand out because most people don't talk about this stuff. We honestly don't trust so good, fast way to build trust with your community and your audience. It also is a great way to build rapport because people will relate to that, because people will … They understand their darker side and those traits in them, and if they see it in you, that builds a connection. And maybe they don't feel connected to everything in your personality, but if you can share more of your personality, they'll start to connect to bits and pieces of it, rather than if you just share one facet of your personality that you feel like you should be sharing. Maybe it's like, “Oh, I'm so creative! I'm going to just show my creative side.”
Sure, you'll attract creative people but there's so many other facets to who you are, that you could connect with more people and kind of grow your community that way. So I would look at things that are more relatable, that aren't as dark. Like for me and my business partner, we often joke that I'm super sensitive and he has no feelings, and when we talk a lot about that in our marketing messages. And you could say either one is negative. Being too sensitive, I don't necessarily feel proud of that, and I don't think he feels proud about like, “He has no feelings!”
He ha no feelings.
But we joke about it and we turn it in, and we talk a lot about those sides to us because that's how we connect with our audience, by sharing those pieces. And all of that has its upside and downside. Being super sensitive has a downside, it can immobilise you, especially in my audience, a lot of copywriters can relate to that so I talk about it often. But it also has a superpower, it allows you to build empathy and to see things other people don't see. So I think if you find other qualities that maybe you think you're not proud of or maybe you're like, “I don't like that about myself all the time,” you can find the upside in everything and that becomes your advantage. Like if you told me three of your top weaknesses, I bet we could figure out how each of those three weaknesses actually has an advantage for you.
The “Perfect” online space
And do you think that's a lot to do with this perfect online space that we're in? That we are so tired of seeing the perfectness in the world, and the beautifully quaffed hair and the lovely makeup, and “the look how in control I am all the time,” that we just think, “Oh my god, we're complete failures,” and, actually, we need to see that they struggle as much as we do.”
Yeah, I think that's part of it because for so long that was look, right? There were a couple icons in our space, we could probably think of the same people who genuinely are that way, have perfect hair, perfect skin, they're in control, and we love them for that. But then it's like a bunch of people saw that and wanted to be that too, even if it's not true to who they are. So I think there is kind of this rebellion against that now, which I'm so happy about, where you have people who are like, “Cool. That doesn't work for me.” And they're seeing now that there are enough leaders in the space who are showing up in more of a real way and still doing well. So I think it's allowing us to kind of accept that, “Hey, maybe you don't have to be perfect to be successful in this space.”
And I mean, for me, I'm kind of like … If you looked at my desk right now, you'd be positively appalled. There's three cans of seltzer! It's a mess! But that's who … For good or for bad, I'm not proud of it, it's part of who I am. I'm a messy artists. Like, that's it! And so I want to show that, so even when I'm thinking about, “Okay, I have a photo shoot coming up next week. How can I get my hair as messy as possible?” Because that's more of a reflection of me then perfectly curled hair that looks like a piece isn't out of place. That doesn't reflect [inaudible 00:18:07] who I am.
If you are listening and you feel the same way, then get messy, get grungy. Do that! Figure out how to show up in that way, as long as it's intentional, and it's just not showing up [crosstalk 00:18:21] haven't combed my hair … or choosing it to make it big and wild.
Yeah, I have to do it. I think this is something that I love, actually, because I love the authenticity, I love the fact that people relate to me for different reasons. So I joke … half joke, that I'm a terrible mother. Because I am not Mother Earth, I will happily admit that. So that would potentially be one of my darker sides. And don't get me wrong, before anybody calls the social services, my is daughter fed, and well, and cared for, and loved. They are perfectly fine. But, do I want to spend my Saturday mornings watching some sports thing or go to some club? No, I don't. Thanks. And I do travel and I do work a lot.
Connecting with your audience via copywriting
But what's useful is people connect with me for different reasons. So some people will listen to that and go, “Oh my gosh, she runs a business, and she has children and stepchildren, and how does she manage?” Like, “She's real about it and she's not trying to make it all like, ‘Oh yes, it's so easy!'” Because it is not easy. My stepson sat in another room and if he makes the same I'm going to kick his backside later. And they know the deal. So it's about kind of showing those sides, so I get it. I get it on an Insta story, I get showing some realness and not always being perfect and whatever. How do I get that in my copy, though? How do I write … ?
Actually, I'm going to be totally selfish and pick your brain about, one thing I do is every Wednesday I write an email. Now, you guys listening, if you're on my email list, you know this, and I've talked about this before, that I write it. I have copywriters who do stuff for me. And one of my team members, she writes my show notes for the podcast every week, she's amazing … because she's a copywriter and that's her skill, that's her superpower. And I decided that I wouldn't get her to write my emails for me because I was so adamant and passionate about it being my voice. And I know, as you well know, we've had emails from people that we follow, and we know damn well it's a copywriter, and it doesn't sound like them, and it doesn't seem authentic, and it sounds … just doesn't sound right. [crosstalk 00:20:30].
I know which copywriters. I can pick out which copywriter it is a lot of [crosstalk 00:20:32].
I bet you can. Honestly, I bet you-
I'm like, “Oh! I know who that is.”
Yeah, because you probably hear that tone and think, “Oh, they write like that and that's their style.” So I do this email every Wednesday, and it's always me that writes it. I've sent it today, I've written one this morning, and how do I make sure my tone of voice is in there, and how do I make sure that my authenticity is in writing when I find it much harder to write than talk? Is there skills? Is there particular tools? Do I need to make sure I write it in a certain way? How do you even start to try and get that in there?
I think the easiest way, which I know you've heard before, is I would just take even what you just shared with me about being … and using the language you're using, whether you like it or not, like, “I'm a terrible mom. I have my son tied up in the back room, he knows not to speak or I'm going to kick him in the back, because he knows that businesses is business.” You said it really elegantly and it was so natural, and it does show a different facet of you, which I didn't know. So I feel more connected to you because … How many times have I thought I'm a terrible mom? And so I don't relate to the mommies who are like perfect on Instagram. I actually despise most of them, which is messed up.
But I'm more drawn to people who are like, “Yeah, I'm not great at this but I'm trying to figure it out every day.” So, I think that draws people in and you had a story, that was kind of short, you could probably elaborate a little bit more on like where your son is. If he's in the other room, what is he doing? Why this is important to you. And that could be the start of an email, and so, for you it's just recording what you're sharing already. You probably have so much content in your podcast interviews that are personal and … stories about your life, that you could just scour through and pull some of those stories, and that becomes the first paragraph or two of an email. And then you connect the dots to what you're going to sell, or your offer, or the value you're providing. But it's a great way to kind of build that story, show a little bit a glimpse of who you are.
It doesn't have to be 600 words or 1000 words about that, if that's not the focus of it, but it's more of like a lead in your email to show a glimpse of who you are, to build that connection, to allow your audience to identify with who you are. And then you can go in whatever direction you want, you can connect the dots to any idea from there. So oftentimes, it's like I'm connecting the dots between my personality and something that's a little bit more intimate, and then, where I want to go which is oftentimes an offer and something I'm selling or maybe it's a podcast episode I want to share. And I'll connect the dots between those two different ideas.
So two things then, how do you know when you're oversharing and telling too much? Because that is like … I have to say, there's been some content out there that, and I see lots of people's content, and some stuff, I think, “You're amazing and that's wonderful and you're very brave, but I couldn't do that.” And other stuff I think, “Oh, I probably shared too much [inaudible 00:23:37],” because I do [inaudible 00:23:38] about family, and kids, dogs, and whatever it is. So, where's the line, or is there even a line?
Yeah, that's the tough part. I'm always asking that for … I mean, my clients ask me that and I'm wondering that even for my own business and brand, as I write and share more, which is challenging for me too. I feel like it's a balance between what's important to you and asking yourself that. Like is it important for people to know more about your life, or your family, or your hobbies and interests, or your relationship with your husband? Is that important to you, or could you care less and you feel like that's off limits? And I think just knowing what's off limits and what's fair game, and setting those boundaries for yourself, to start, really helps, knowing that that will change.
So a couple of years ago when my kids were younger, I really didn't talk about them much, I didn't write about them. And only recently, they're seven and five now, I'm talking about them more and writing about them more, because, to me, it's like how could I not? I learn lessons from them that I want to share. This is my life. And so, knowing that this will change and that's okay, you don't have set boundaries and rules that will stick for the next five years, it will change from quarter to quarter. And then beyond that, I think it's a nice mix of the two. So for me, if someone reads an email where I'm kind of sharing, getting a little bit vulnerable, and they don't like it, which people don't, I had someone recently say, “I'm not interested,” they're not the right person for me.
I want to be in communion and in a community with people who do want to know a little bit about what my relationship is like with my kids, what I do at home when I'm not working, who want to see that. And for people who don't want to see that, then like, cool, that relationship doesn't work for me. So you kind of leave. But there is a fine balance. So for me, it's like, I don't want every email I write and send to my list to be about my life, to be all me, me, me. So it's like rotating and figuring out your content to make sure, “Oh, this is actually about you, I'm talking all about you, all about your problems, all about what you want to get out of this business and your life.” And then maybe every third email is more a glimpse into your life and sharing more about who you are.
So figuring out that balance, for some people it is more about them, for other business owners it's more about the customers and providing that value in teaching. Basically, it comes down to what relationship you want to have with your audience.
Putting yourself out there
Okay, that's awesome. So I've got someone who I'm working with at the moment, who, quite honestly, is terrified of putting themselves out there. And this is not unusual, I could probably pick a name immediately of people that I'm working with or have worked with, were they were like, “Mm-mm, I don't want to do that.” So can we just put them like, on why that's important, and how to-
… get a little bit comfortable with … Don't get me wrong, the degree in which you share yourself is entirely up to you. If you're sat there, listening, going, “I don't want to talk about my kids,” then absolutely fine. I guess don't talk about your kids. But we do buy off people, and I am a huge advocate of showing up and showing yourself, and so that I can get to know who you are and if I'm going to buy your product and [inaudible 00:26:58]. And especially what we do, and what I do, you have to know if I am. Because if you don't know me and you don't like me, then you're not going to want to work with me. So you've got to see me. Either, they get comfortable [inaudible 00:27:09], actually showing up and why do they need to do that.
Yeah. The why behind it is important because this isn't just for fun and it's not just about me sharing stories about what I do at home. The reason it's important is because of … It goes back to Eugene Schwartz, who created the concept around market sophistication and his book Breakthrough Advertising, which is like the copywriter's Bible. And so he talks about the five stages of market sophistication, which are really critical here because these five stages are basically telling us where our audience is. Is it a saturated market? Have they already heard about similar offers to ours? How many competitors do we have? Are our customers jaded, have they turned off, because they're hearing the same message repeatedly?
And so these five stages really help us evaluate like, how do we fit into the market landscape that we're playing in? And if you don't have a handle on that and you're wondering why people don't pay attention to you, it's probably because you're showing up in the wrong way and your messaging is off based off where your market is. I could talk through the five stages, but if we don't want to dig deep into that, the most important part is, here, with a lot of the businesses you and I work with, and probably a lot of people listening, you're in stage five, which means that the typical messages about your offer and what you're doing, have already been said.
It means you're probably in a crowded space. So if you know you're in a crowded market space, and it's loud and everyone's kind of saying the same thing, you're most likely in stage five, which is busy, crowded, and it takes a lot more effort. It takes a different strategy for showing up. So in stage five, when your customers and your audience no longer can hear you when you're talking about an offer, no longer hears you when you're talking about the same benefits everybody else is talking about, and no longer hears you when you're talking about your unique mechanism and how you do things differently, because it's no longer different. For a while it was like, “Oh, I have this course that has eight modules and will help you get this goal.” And for a little while that was new. But it no longer is.
So at this stage, what's most important is to allow your audience to identify with you. Identification is basically like allowing your audience to see what they want in their life, in you as a brand personality. Especially if you have a brand personality-based business, then they need to be able to see their goals, their aspirations, what they're scared of, through your brand and the messaging that you're sharing. And so in order to create that identification match, we need to share more of who we are. Because if we're not showing what's possible, and what we value, what we stand for, what we aspire to become, what we are today, then we aren't allowing our audience to identify with our brand.
Disconnection, then, will hurt us in the marketplace because someone else will do that and take your customers away. And they'll create that bond that you could create.
You're so right, because, honestly, in my world, in your world, there are a million people doing what we do.
You can Google it and get a gazillion results of people that do what we do. The only thing that stands out between us and them, is us as individuals. That some people will love the way I teach, the way I talk, my honesty, my situation, they'll be able to relate with it, they'll be able to see it. And others, it will not resonate in the slightest and they will not like what I do, or they won't like the way do it. Or they much prefer someone younger, older, whatever the situation might be, they can then decide. But if they don't see me, and they don't hear me, and they don't know about me, and know what personal stuff they can relate with, then they're not going to, are they? They're not going to be able to at least distinguish me against anybody else.
Yeah, you're right. It's definitely the point where you want to be more polarising and attract the right people, who are like, “Wow! I relate to what you're saying about parenting and I relate to what you're saying about business in general.” And then also pushing other people away. And I think it's a good sign when you have those unsubscribes and when you have those people who even spend time emailing you or writing about you to say, “This doesn't resonate with me.” And people get so offended about it! It's like, “Okay, cool. Then I'm not right [inaudible 00:31:56] for you. There are other copywriters you could work with.”
Yeah, yeah, absolutely. So okay, what if they're super terrified, how do they even get started? What's the first couple of steps that they should look at?
How to get started with sharing more!
Yeah, that's such a great question. The first few steps, I'd say, are … The first step is what we're talking about, figure out what makes you weird. And the funny thing is, so many people say, “Well, I don't know.” But when I ask people and they really think about it, they always can come up with an answer, or at least the clients I work with and I have forced them to think about it. So you already know what makes you weird and you can answer however you want. It's like, “What makes you eccentric, or unique, or different?” If weird doesn't resonate with you, that's okay.
And so start there, and again, don't edit, look at whatever those answers are, and maybe it's something that's good or bad, just have no judgement around it. So I think it starts by understanding that piece of it. I have some questions, I can share, that I will ask my clients-
That would be awesome.
… that will help trigger some responses and to help you figure out what makes you different. One question would be, what's the most useless talent you have? If you were held at gunpoint and told that if you didn't impress them with your dance moves you'd be killed, what dance moves would you bust out? What's the weirdest thing that a guest has done at your house? And so these are pulling out more stories. But also answering, if you had to change your name, what would your new name be and why would you choose that name? What's the strangest gift you've ever given or received? If you were a colour in a crayon box, what colour would you be and why?
I love these.
You can find hundreds of questions on the internet, which is the greatest thing about the internet. So you can pull these questions, if you aren't working with the copywriter who can extract this information from you, and start journaling on those answers just to kind of pull out this different side of you. So that's piece one, it's figuring out basics there. You don't have to figure it all out. I mean, we learn as we go who we are. And then, hopefully, in there you find a kernel that you're excited about, something that you're excited about that you want to share. So look for that piece that you're like, “Okay, I could talk about how the fact that I don't feel like I'm always the best parent and I feel like I'm a terrible mom sometimes. I could share that because I really feel strongly about it and it's something I've wrestled with.”
And then just figure out what is the next places you could share that, that would be easy to share it, where you might have more supporters than trolls. I mean, there's always trolls out there, but I would choose an outlet that feels a little bit easier. So maybe, if you have your Facebook friends, it could be a post to share there that's more of a story. It could be on your Instagram feed. I wouldn't necessarily post a huge article on [inaudible 00:34:56] this new revelation about what makes you weird because you're exposing yourself to a lot of people that may make it a lot harder for you. So I'd share in a very comfortable atmosphere, probably on social media. And I would start there before you start publishing anything to hundreds of thousands of people.
So that would be a good step one, but it takes practise. So once you do that, do it again, and do it again, and then do it again, until you start to feel more comfortable sharing a little bit more. But the bottom line is every time you share something, it should feel uncomfortable, you should wince a little bit. Every time I hit send on an email I always feel queasy, and it's because I'm sharing a little bit more of myself and I'm like, “I don't know, this feels really uncomfortable.” And I think that's a good sign.
But do you not find that those points … Whenever I've done that, whenever I've shared something that I've thought … Or I've shared something different or personal, but when I get all the responses, that's when I get people contacting me and saying things, and replying to emails and replying to my DMs. That's when you get people's attention, because A. it's not the same thing as everybody else saying, and B. that's the stuff they resonate with, and then they can go, “I felt like that,” or, “That happened to me,” or, “I have the same situation,” or what their take is on it. So I think when you are a little bit scared, even if one person says something horrible, the chances are 20-30 people are going to come back and say something nice. So who cares about that one person?
Yeah, and if your writing is something that is true to who you are and you can stand behind it, no matter what, then I say, “Who cares?” For me, it's therapy to just share this pieces, and if it resonates, great. But I'm also saying too, before you hit publish, I'm not talking about like the queasy, “Oh my gosh, is this going to be offensive? Am I going to get in trouble?” It's more like … I have people edit and review my emails, for instance, because I do edit to make sure that I've thought through what I'm saying. So it's not just like this knee-jerk reaction, “I'm just going to puke up all these thoughts and vulnerabilities, and just send it out to the world because it feels scary.”
It's really more intentional, where you're thinking about what you're writing, you have people who can view it and even review it before you hit send, to offer different perspectives. But ultimately, you're still going to hit send once you've reviewed it to make sure that you're putting yourself out there and you're not hiding.
Yeah. And I have the same. I have someone that reads my emails for me and just makes sure that like, “Is that all right?” And I always kind of say to them, “Do you think that's okay?” And they're like, “Yeah, that's cool.” And I knew if they would say, “Actually, I don't think you should choose it,” that I would totally respect that. But I have to say, I agree it gets easier and easier and easier. I remember, for a long, long time, I wasn't willing to do that. I wanted to look perfect. We'd come from the corporate world, it was a world where you weren't allowed to show, or it wasn't encouraged that you showed that side [inaudible 00:38:05] you didn't talk about your home life. At lots of places I worked, you didn't talk about your home life.
So, I think it took a real while for me to get comfortable with it. And I think if you're just starting out, it's really easy to look at other people in the world who are doing this and think, “Well, it's easy for you.” No, it wasn't! I look at Jenna Kutcher and think, “Why the hell would you put yourself on camera without any makeup?” Because I sure as hell wouldn't do that. And so for me, she's at a step that I'm not at. I'm not there yet. She's way ahead of me. Do I ever want to get to that point? I'm not sure I do.
Because maybe you don't, maybe you don't. I mean, we don't have to. Maybe that's her path. But I don't know if I want to show up on camera without makeup, I love my makeup.
And I do, yeah.
I don't know if I aspire to that, but I think maybe it's about choosing the channel that best fits you. So if it's your podcast and you share more of who you are on your podcast. For me it's my podcast, sharing more of who I am on my podcast. And maybe also Instagram, because I am drawn to visual storytelling. But there are definitely areas where I see people showing up and it works for them, and I'm like, “Cool,” but I don't have any interest to be in it right now.
Yeah, yeah. So it's not a case of you just have to do it. So, to finish off the modicums of our time, and thank you very much for giving me your time today, how do I turn this into converting? So, if I'm thinking of a sales page or a lead magnet, or a … Let's say, in this podcast, I wanted to take you to buy or in the show notes or whatever, how do I move into converting without feeling like, “I want to share and bleach.” Because telling a story and then going straight into, “Buy my stuff!” It feels a little bit uncomfortable.
Converting your customers
That's true. I think it depends on where you are in the sales cycle. So if you're in the middle of a launch, then you probably shouldn't share as much personality in your copy. You should really focus on the audience and the reader, and focus on them. And yeah, your voice will still be strong, but I tone it down and I pull myself out of it when-
… I'm talking about cart-close. If you just think about cart-close day and any offer, does your audience really want to hear about your story about, even if it's the best story ever, about whatever lesson you're teaching from that story? They don't. Because, for them, they need to know the basics. Like, “How many hours do I? Remind me of the transformation. What's going to happen if I don't buy this?” So I just try to think about it in terms of like where I am, as far as the sales cycle. But if [inaudible 00:40:52] way and it's more of like, let's say, a weekly nurture email, just sharing some value with [inaudible 00:40:58], sharing your latest podcast episode, I don't have to create that scarcity and the urgency. I don't have to focus on building this transformation. It's more of like, “Hey, this is a check-in! Let's have a conversation.” So it's easier for me to share more of my personality and have a conversation, while providing some value for the reader.
So I think, first, start speaking about where you are in that sale cycle, and how much personality you really should share. Because there is a line where it's like, “It's not about you.” It's not about you at all, anymore.
Right. And I think that's another interesting point, isn't it? Because I think, sometimes, we … or I do often say in phone training or if I'm in the academy, “They don't care about you,” and then what if they don't? Because what they're thinking about at that point, is like you said, “What do I need to know? Why do I want this? Do you resonate with me and do you understand me?” But, also, in your messaging, and in my emails every week, and in my Instagram stories, and whatever, I am showing them through my stories that I can relate to them, that I do understand where they're coming from. Because I've been, I've been there, I'm still living it in some places. So, showing that along the way, can hopefully bring someone in.
And also, like when you are, let's say, in wash mode or you are selling something, and maybe that's the time where you shouldn't be sharing the story, there are other ways that you can show your personality and continue to build your brand, that aren't so in your face, because having that continuity really does help. You don't go from like full on personality to like, “Oh, we're selling something. I have zero personality.” So the opportunities … Again, I'm going back to email, because that's just more present in my mind, it's like your hook. I mean, the first sentence or question or statement in your email is something where you could turn your personality up, because you've got to grab their attention.
And you can grab their attention there, with some piece of who you are or some piece of who they are, and then you can get into more than the sale. Another opportunity could be your close, how you sign off your emails. I mean, so often we're just like … we never know how to sign off. It's like some, “Thank you!” Like, cheering you on. That sign off is the best opportunity to show your personality. You can create a nickname for yourself, you can add a lyric to your favourite song, you can come up with new words or phrases to sign off your email. And it's one thing you could do to every email to keep people interested and kind of guessing and wondering like, “Okay, what's next?” Rather than a blanket sign off to all of your emails.
So I always come up with a new sign off, and I'm always looking for inspiration to keep those fresh and to make it fun, and to add personality there. And even if your brand isn't like, “In your face, I want to be fun and playful,” because that's not everyone's brand, you can still pull in something into the hook, or the sign off that grabs attention and that you have created anew, and it's fresh every time you reach out to your audience.
That's so interesting, because one of the things I did when I started writing my Wednesday emails, and I said to people, “I'm not going to use a copywriter, I'm writing it. You're going to hear my true, authentic, slightly funny voice.” I said to them, “I'm going it sign it off as I sign off to my friends, because that's the way I want to treat you guys.” So I when I write anything to friends, I just put my name, that my family call me or my stepchildren call me, is T. Literally just the letter T. And so, therefore, I sign things off T and kiss, just one kiss and a capital T, and that's it.
So now, every email I send, is T and a kiss. And it's like … Because I wanted to be, “This is how I would be if I was your best mate and we were best [inaudible 00:44:53]. So, that's how I want to be, because I want to … That's how I see you guys. Because the fact that you've come into my community and you're on my list, I love that and I want to appreciate you and show you that, through that way.” So doing that teeny-tiny, little thing, for me, did feel like an element of my personality has come out in there.
Although, I do struggle. I have to say, there are emails that I get, that is like, “Hello, beautiful Teresa, ” and I'm like … Honestly, I'm like, “Shut up! You've never met me. You don't even know-“
I do not stand … I do not back that up, any emails … Unless it's something that you … And I know what you're like talking about, it's like, “Hey, love!” Like, “Hey, gorgeous!”
There's a lot of that, and I can't say I've never written that for clients, but if it's something … Or, “Hey, darling!” If it's something they truly say … From working with clients, if my client really does say that and that is how they speak to their friends, like you were saying-
Yeah, then it's authentic.
… “Call me T,” then I will leave it. Also noting that you still have to pay attention to it, because if everyone else is saying and it's not authentic to them, it makes you look inauthentic even if it's true to who you are. So I think it's worth paying attention to that, and even if you are working with a copywriter and they add in a line like, “Hey, beautiful,” cut it out, edit that out. If that's not something you say, do not say that, because it does turn off a lot of people and it's just overdone. And anytime, anything, you've seen it three times or more, it's overdone. We can do better than that.
But I think what you said about speaking to friends, and if friends call you T, then that's how you sign off your emails, then I think for what … our types of businesses and these brand personalities, thinking about your email copy, like, “Would I send this to a friend? Is this how I would sign off?”
And what would they think? And does it sound like me?
Yeah, and what would they think? Yes! And so, for me, it's like add friends to your list, because then you know that they're actually going through these emails. And so I have a lot of my friends on my list because I know that will keep me in check, so I'm always writing with that friendly tone.
I love that. I've got one final story to tell you, and then a question that comes at the end of it. So, I was having my website rewritten, and the sales page rewritten and various things, and I was working with a copywriter I've known for a very long time, she isn't working with me at the moment. And we have calls together, and we chatted, and she was getting my tone of voice. And she'd seen me speak and seen me in events, and I'd spent my time with her, so she did know me pretty well. And she wrote one of my pages for me, and she came back to me and was like, “[inaudible 00:47:29] read them and see what you think.” I was like, “yeah, cool.”
And was all good and it sounded fine, and on one of the pages, she wrote … I think it was in the About Me-type page, she wrote, “I do this, and the reason I do what I do is for my family and my children.” I have to give it back to her and go, “It's not true!” That's what I said to her! Like, “No, I don't-“
“That is not why I do what I do.”
I don't do it for them! Don't get me wrong, I love the fact that because of how hard I work and what we do, we get to do lovely things. And, obviously, I want my children to work hard and do what you want to do, and dream and … But I genuinely couldn't sit here and go, “I do this all my family.” And it's like, “I don't!” And then, when she was like, “What hobbies do you have?” That's why the gin thing initially came out. It started years and years ago, I did a competition and … to speak at an event. It was an American event, and I wanted to do a very British thing. And I thought, “Can I be a bit quirky here and be a bit of a personality?” And one of the first times I ever showed it.
We did this thing where I'm holding a tea cup and talking [inaudible 00:48:43], because I am British. And then I was like, “I can't keep up this up. This isn't tea in here, it's actually gin.” Because I don't drink tea, I must be the only British person not to drink tea, but I flipping love gin. So when people say what are my hobbies, I'm like, “Do you count drinking gin? Because that's one of my hobbies.” That's all I do. I work or drink gin.
So, it carries on. That thing carries on for everything I do, because that is part of who I am. So just quickly on that then, should you be getting a copywriter to write the bigger things for you? Should you be getting copywriters who write yours sales pages and your websites, and that sort of thing? And how we make sure that they get your tone of voice? Because like I said, bless her, I'm looking at her, she was beautiful and she was totally all into her family, and I just thought, “No, that's you saying that. I'm not saying that.”
“That is your life, not mine.” It is funny how we reflect our values and our clients sometimes. And also, it's funny because when I read your website copy and I was checking you out, what drew me in, the moment I was like, “Oh, I like you,” was when I read about you drinking gin! Because I'm like, “I could totally see us drinking gin together.”
Again, that might repel some people who are like, “I would never drink at all,” or, “I don't drink,” or, “I don't drink gin.” But it attracts the people like me, who are like, “Let's go to a bar right now-
… and drink gin.”
It does work. Oh my gosh, now I'm forgetting your question! I'm sorry, what was your question?
It's fine because you got distracted by gin!
I got distracted by gin!
Should you get a copywriter to do these things for you? Because, obviously, I don't have the writing skill, or I don't think I do. So, should we just be doing that or should we be trying to do this ourselves?
Using a copywriter for your content
That is such a great question, and it depends on where you are in your business. I mean, there's definitely a stage where you're just getting started out and you might have … If you don't have any money to invest, then yeah, you have to DIY it, but there are lots of copywriters who offer DIY programme are Done With You programme where they can support you, and they might not do it for you but they have good guidance. To me, I'm still biassed, but I'd say yes. This is one of the most important assets, marketing assets, you have on your business. It's not one that you want to wait to invest in.
So to me it's like, think of the most critical places where clients will land and they will decide if they want to hire you or not, and it's your website. It might be a particular sales page, it might be a sales email sequence. But there are other areas you could write for now, if you can't outsource all of it, which most people can't immediately. Like your weekly emails, right?
Where you really need to be authentic and connect with your audience. I think it's tricky even for me. We've been told, in my business, to outsource a lot of the copy because we have so much going on. And even for me, as a copywriter, I'm like … I still wouldn't want to do that because I want to have my authentic voice in there. So figure out what you want to hang on to, that feels really intimate and important, and you could possibly bring in a copywriter to optimise it, [inaudible 00:51:58] add it, to maybe up your personality, to edit, to provide some feedback on how it can convert better, but you can still own it.
And then there could be other areas, like a long form sales page that takes forever and requires so much skill set and experience to do it well, that I would, for sure, hire someone to help me with it because that's a tonne of work. And if you're launching something, you don't have the time to write a long form sales page. That could take a month for a copywriter to write.
And we were just talking about, just before we came on, the fact that you've written sales pages that I know I've viewed and purchased from, so well done!
It worked. But they are really important! And they are massive, and when you look at the likes of Amy's, and James's, and the Pat's, and the whoever's in this world, selling their online stuff, it is really important, and they've obviously crafted that message over time, and they've obviously put time and effort and money into it. And it's not them writing it. Now it could totally be their tone of voice in there, their values, what they stand for, but in order to connect that customer so that can [inaudible 00:53:11] read, that's a real skill, isn't it?
Yeah. And as you grow your business, it doesn't end. It's not like you can write a sales page or your website copy, and you're done. Then you create something new, as we're always creating new offers, and it starts again. And you need new Facebook ad copy and a new landing page and … So it is an ongoing piece of your business that you can choose to improve, and take classes and courses to improve your writing. Or you can decide to outsource it and rely on a couple people at different levels. The good thing about working with copywriters is you can find someone at every level, and experience level, and price point, so that if you're not running a six-figure business yet, you can still find someone who might be a little bit more green, but isn't charging quite as much, and you can still get support.
Yeah, yeah. Perfect. Kira, thank you so, so much. It's been such a pleasure having you on, great talking to about this. It's so, so important. And like said, it's an area that I think … showing yourself up more is brilliant and trying to do that in writing is a hard thing. So thank you so, so very much.
Thank you for having me and I look forward to drinking some gin with you at some point soon!
For sure! For sure.
Okay. What do you think? I thought that was really cool. I liked some of the advice she gave. Like I said, the authenticity thing is super important to me. Also, the fact that, basically, we are all in created markets. There's not many of us, I don't think, that are listening that, aren't in a market where this isn't already been done, or someone is already selling your product or service. So, really, we are the only thing that stands out.
There are lots of marketing podcasts out there, and if you didn't like me and my tone or my way … I delivered things or the way I speak, then you would go and listen to another one. So, I think that's the key thing, that if you're putting yourself out there and you're being authentic about it, then you're going to attract the people that you like and they like you. So, I think it's a really positive thing and if someone doesn't like you then that's cool, they don't like you, and there's another product or service they could go and buy instead.
Anyway, I really hope that helped. I will be back next week with a solo episode. At this point, I don't know what that is, because we're several weeks in advance, but I will definitely be back. And I will speak to you then, take care!