A small business owner once approached me for a copy project. We talked a bunch about the themes and messages he wanted to run throughout.
“What I want,” he explained, “is to give the impression that we’re a big company.”
This wasn’t the first or the last time I got this request. I responded: “Why would you want to hide one of your company’s best attributes?”
Alright, I probably didn’t word it that perfectly. But you get the drift. Time and time again, executives want to give the impression that they’re bigger than they are.
By projecting a big company feel, they think:
- Customers respect a company that’s obviously been around for several years
- A big brand equates to reliable customer service
- Doing it longer means doing it better
In reality, customers don’t necessary want a big brand. They want big accomplishments. They crave reliable customer service. They want a reliable product or service. Big companies tend to assume small competition. As a result, companies like GoDaddy, Comcast, Best Buy and AT&T have customer service problems. Because they know they can get away with it. They’ve cornered the market. They put their big budgets into marketing and ignore things that customers care about.
Why project that image? Why not tout the benefits of a small company feel? Successful small businesses offer a more personalized experience for customers. Try carving out a niche on which you can actually deliver.
Small businesses imply:
- They’ll work harder to get and keep their customers’ business
- They’ll offer personal, human interaction
- They’re trying something new that will advance the market
Your copy should embrace your aesthetic. Customers will thank you for your honesty. And maybe that honesty will result in massive growth. Then, you can start ignoring what your customers want. *rolls eyes*