Lost in Translation

The Importance of Persona-Focused Marketing Messages

I recently talked with a CMO about the need to map out their customer journeys and create some persona-focused messaging. As they shared, there was some internal resistance to investing in this. The feeling at the leadership level was that one generic message was enough.

Our conversation took me back to my recent trip to Nepal, where I traveled with an interpreter and guide. Since most locals in the villages we visited didn’t speak English, we communicated in Nepali, which is spoken by about 45% of the country. However, I soon learned there were regional variations of Nepali, along with 122 other languages spoken by the Nepali people, which we encountered daily. In those situations, we were still able to communicate with each other, but there were clearly times when things got lost in translation.

Speaking the same language matters.

Think about this example for a moment. Imagine trying to sell a solution to someone in sales, someone in finance, someone in operations, and someone in customer service. Each one of those individuals has different pains and goals that the solution will help them solve. With that in mind, each of them needs to hear a different message about how the solution will improve their lives. They care less about how it will impact everyone else. Instead, they need to hear that thing that makes them say, “They understand me.”

When we do our brand messaging and customer journey mapping work with clients, this is what we’re working toward. Our goal is to create messages for our clients that create that instant, one-on-one connection with a prospect where they feel seen and understood. Until this happens for a potential customer or client, they’ll never engage. When brands create that “they understand me” moment, it sparks a fire.

Start speaking the same language as your customers. Invest the time and energy required to see the world through their lens, step into their shoes, and create that feeling of being seen and understood. It’s the first step to building the kind of relationships that will grow your organization in a healthy, positive way.

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