Do you speak human?
You might be thinking: “What kind of a question is that? Of course I speak human, what else will I be speaking? Whale?”
It might seem like a silly question, but it crosses my mind each time I read content that sounds like it was written by an unfeeling android. Think about all the papers, reports, and articles that you see on a daily basis. I guarantee that a good number of them don’t speak human. So who were those pieces intended for?
B2B, B2C, B2What?
At the end of the day, we’re all actually speaking to another human being (surprise!). So should there really be a difference in how we share stories and communicate, whether it’s B2B or B2C? I don’t think so.
You build relationships with people, not with businesses. We all know that guy at the party who keeps talking about himself, yes, that loud, boisterous person. You see his lips moving, but all you can think of is how you can escape the wrath of the one-sided conversation where he’s always the best. Nobody likes that guy. It’s the same thing when businesses try to communicate how they are the best and repeat their key messages over and over. It doesn’t seem genuine, it gets tuned out, and people smell its “salesy-ness” from miles away. But if you replace that with a person who actually lets you talk and listens to your needs, who sympathizes with you and understands your situation, and actually helps you, then you feel more comfortable, trust is built, and you know that you’ve got a great go-to guy.
You don’t talk to everyone in the same way. Wouldn’t it be strange if someone went up to you and started speaking to you like you were a four-year-old? And wouldn’t it seem a bit out of place if you overheard someone explaining the theory of relativity to a two-year-old in a highly complex manner? You adapt the way you speak depending on who you’re talking to. The same thing applies whether you are doing B2B or B2C. You have to know who you are communicating with so that your story, your information will be meaningful and resonate with them. With the way things are going online, communication is getting more and more personal.
We all have feelings and appreciate value. Ok, you might know one or two people who have absolutely no feelings or emotions, but the vast majority of human beings do. So why not talk to them like they’re actual people? The key is to communicate in a way that adds value, whether you are entertaining, educating or both. What you say needs to give your audience something to chew on and digest. It needs to address their key pain points and be focused on topics that they care about. You can be both entertainer and thought-leader when you share insightful information.
Even science can be communicated in a human way
It all boils down to human to human communication. And the success of your content/storytelling efforts depend on the remarkable stories you tell and the value they can deliver.
Now, will you speak human? 🙂