As a seasoned marketer, you’ve likely heard about how important it is to speak to the “you.” You want your audience to see themselves in your advertising, and using “you” is a great way to achieve that. But have you ever considered the value of “we”?
Effective advertising can come in a seemingly endless list of shapes and forms. There are many schools of thought on what works and what doesn’t, but here are a few things all advertisers seem to agree on:
- Messaging should help potential customers see how their life could be improved with your product or service.
- You shouldn’t assume your customer will read about the features of your product or service and glean how it will benefit them. Tell them specifically about those benefits so nothing is left to chance! (Read more about benefits vs. features in college marketing here.)
- You should target messaging specifically to the various groups who may engage with your brand. (In other words, don’t use the same campaign for every group; tap into and engage them in their differences.)
Using “you” verbiage is a great way to start accomplishing some of the concepts above. Consider the effectiveness of the following:
Our dental school has a brand new facility, housing the latest in dental technologies.
I’m envisioning a fancy building, maybe some equipment, and… That’s about it. Not super exciting, right? What if we try it this way:
Get hands-on experience with the latest technologies, and enter your career with the real-world knowledge you need to succeed.
In this scenario, I can see myself in a really cool learning environment and then at my station with a patient, conducting a dental exam.
The “all about you” method is a really simple way to develop targeted messaging. But I recently saw a new concept I hadn’t considered: the compelling use of “we.”
We’re all in this together…
So I’m sure you’ve used “we” in advertisements before. And that’s great! It likely added some personality and trust to the tone of your messaging. But I bet it’s not exactly the same concept I have in mind for this post. The “we” I want to discuss is including yourself as part of the subject.
Instead of simply saying something like, “Our mED program will help you grow in your skills and experience as a passionate educator,” why not try the following:
As educators, we work tirelessly to shape futures and open doors for all students. Further your passion by getting your mED.
If you were an educator, which version would resonate more? Notice that the “we” commends and affirms the educator’s passions and shows that the advertiser knows what really matters. The compelling use of “we” should create a sense of community and help your prospective student feel as though their deepest desires are heard.
The takeaway here is to show that you don’t just understand what a prospective student is looking for; this takes the message a step further, giving the sense that you actually share their motivations and dreams.
That’s the “we” difference. How can it work for you?
Have you tried “you” or “we” verbiage in your campaigns? What worked/what didn’t? Let us know at (423) 402-8554. If you need assistance in coming up with a “we” campaign, we’d love to workshop that with you.