In my business, I am fortunate to work with hundreds of business owners. A numerous amount of them are in their 40s with families to care for. For them to pursue their dreams, many have departed from their previous jobs and others are business owners who are looking to target new and high-level clients. To really capture their visions and design a website that they love and that their clients can relate to (a successful online business), it is important that I take the time to listen to their goals and agendas for their website.
In our strategy call, I will ask questions like, “tell me about your struggles and what makes you the best in the market,” and when applicable I will ask, “why do you think your competitors are attracting your market and you aren’t?”
Over the years, I’ve gathered a lot of information that gives me insight to my clients’ deepest thoughts and aspirations. Also, I’ve learned how women and men think differently from each other and why it is so hard for women to position themselves as leaders and experts in their field.
Most women I work with are mothers. They spend most of their time helping their family instead of pursuing their own goals. Women tend to think about everything and everyone before they give themselves permission to love and invest in themselves.
We tend to think about our kids, partners, colleagues, business partners and even pets before ourselves but leave no additional space for us. Just the other day, I made dinner for my family and I caught myself serving my kids and husband first and when there was almost nothing left in the pot for me, I just shrugged it off and said to myself, “Oh well. I will just eat less.”
Can you relate? We have this mental block on us that prevents us from making some room for our own needs and it deeply impacts our personal and business life.
When it comes to our businesses and websites, we don’t often highlight ourselves as the expert in our field. We feel uncomfortable in the spotlight and we try to share it with everyone else or we brush it off; we make it about the services and not about us as the expert.
I’ve heard this too many times: “What about my team? Are we going to highlight them as well?”
And this line: “I’m not sure I’m ready for this. Maybe we should talk about the practice in general instead of my expertise.”
I hear this coming from strong, powerful and knowledgeable women.
When you create a business website about your services and not yourself, you forget about the saturated market. You forget people will choose to engage with you for the sole reason that they merely want to connect with who you are. The people want to feel that you understand them. They want to feel that there’s a human being within the expert who can help them. They want to hear about your experience with a similar issue and how your experience made you stronger. They want to interact with you and look up to you. They want to be inspired and they want to follow a leader; they do not always want strictly services.
The second point I wanted to mention is that as human beings and business owners, we have the notion that the only way to attract new clients and be perceived as an expert is to be perfect.
There is no place for vulnerability or shame in our online and offline life anymore. We all need to fit in this box where we wear certain-sized clothes, are successful and raise kids who get straight A’s in school. If that’s not the case, then we cannot lead others.
In Brene Brown’s book, Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead, she talks about how women take it one step further by having to perfectly do it all and never complain or let others see their struggles. It’s an ongoing conflict between who she is and who she is supposed to be.
This reveals itself mostly in the website’s copy, where the story is often about how successful, powerful, and knowledgeable she is. However, there’s rarely ever any mention about the real account behind the success, about the struggles, lack of sleep, fighting self-esteem issues, feeling insecurity, and everything else that shaped their journey which made them who they are.
Yes, the rainbows-and-unicorns story will help lay the ground for the expertise and positioning but the whole-hearted, vulnerable truth will define who you are and get people to listen to, relate to, and follow you. A good page to connect with your clients and to share your story is your About page.
Can you relate to any of the points I mentioned in this post? Let me know your thought in the comments below