Branding Message Development Mistakes You Should Avoid

Jeanne San Pascual, Psych-Based Copywriter

18 April 2019

One factor that can help you succeed as an online entrepreneur is branding message development.

After all, the Internet is littered with competition no matter what your field is. So how do you exactly stand out and attract your dream clients to your brand?

Gain Competitive Edge Through Branding Message Development

Well, first and foremost, you have to have a branding message that does the heavy lifting for you.

It should clearly state why they should choose you and how you can help them.

That sounds pretty easy but you won’t believe how many businesses and startups mess up one of the most important aspects of their brand—their message.

Make sure that doesn’t happen to you!

Check out the info below on some of the most common mistakes online businesses commit when it comes to their brand copy.

Target Audience and Language Mismatch

If you did your assignment and already know who your target market is, you have to craft your message in a way that resonates with them. 

This means using the words that they use and employing a tone they would understand clearly.

For instance, if your prospects are young, hip millennials in their late 20’s, you’d be better off using a casual tone in your writing so they can better relate to your message.

Not Focusing on What Your Clients Want

Humans can be naturally self-absorbed.

That’s why it’s easy to get caught up talking about your business or brand and forget about who your message is for.

Always remember to address their needs and problems before ever thinking of making a sale.

That would come easily if your prospects can see that you can be of help to them. Resist the urge to list your mile-long list of accolades or achievements.

Most people don’t give a hoot about that. All they really care about is what results you can help them achieve. 

“All they really care about is what results you can help them achieve.”

Insert Some Pizzazz Into Your Branding Message

Attention is such a precious commodity nowadays.

People rarely give it and if ever they do—they do so only fleetingly.

That’s why it’s important that your branding message is filled with personality and differentiates you from your competitors.

The last thing you want to do is to sound like you’re parroting someone else.

You can do this by telling an interesting story of how your business came about. This does the job of making you memorable in the mind of your visitors! 

Using Jargon

Using jargon in your web copy is a capital sin you should definitely avoid!

Unless your target clients are strictly experts, don’t make this mistake or you’ll lose potential prospects in the process. 

When people don’t understand something, they don’t try to process it.

They just leave it at that…

And that’s the last thing you want them to do!

Make sure your audience feels connected from the get-go by using language that they themselves use and you’re set!

Not Being Consistent in What You Say

There’s nothing like an always changing message that alienates your prospects away from you—and promptly at that.

You’ll not only lose credibility in the eyes of your target audience but they’ll have a hard time trusting what you say.

This usually happens if they see something different every time they read or hear something from you.

That’s why it’s important to have a solid, powerful message that encapsulates what you do.

It has a better chance of sticking in their minds and would better establish you as the go-to authority for what you’re offering!

Parroting Another Brand’s Voice

We currently live in a world where most marketplaces are already cluttered…

And in order to succeed, you have to be able to find your own voice in order to set yourself apart.

Otherwise, you’re just setting yourself up to always be the second-rate version of another.

In order to stand out, you have to let your prospects know what makes you unique and why you’re the best choice for their problem.

Not Building a Storybrand

One of the goals of having a branding message is to make sure your business can stand out from others and stick in people’s mind.

And one way to do this is through storytelling.

As the name suggests, storytelling is all about weaving a story into your brand…

It could be a story of how your business started, what makes you different in the industry or how you were able change your customers’ lives.

If you’re thinking to yourself, “Why do I need to turn those into stories when I can just say those things right off the bat?”

Well, because people LOVE reading and listening to stories.

But more than just that, people tend to remember stories better.

This means your brand will likely stick in their minds long after they left your site or read about you!

Example of a Good and Bad Branding Message

Now that you know the most common branding message mistakes, here’s an example of a good and bad branding message you can learn from!

Just reading the headline alone, you already know who Diana helps.

Throughout the rest of the paragraph, she clearly shows how she understands her target audience and how she can help their business.

But more than that, she also lets them know why she’s the right person to pick. 

Overall, Diana was able to craft an effective branding message that has all the important elements in it!

Now moving on to the bad example.

My only gripe with this branding message is how it seems to be saying two contradictory things.

If you’ve read the above, there’s a line that says, “...I choose to be clear rather than clever. And one of my super-powers is synthesizing disparate parts into a cohesive and meaningful whole…”

I definitely agree with the first sentence.

It’s definitely more important to be clear rather than clever because customers who don’t understand you won’t buy from you.

But the thing is, she followed up the said statement with the opposite and by spouting jargon that would leave the standard reader thinking, “Uhm, what did she just say?”

So much for being clear there.  

The Key to a Brand Message That Connects and Converts

It’s definitely not an easy feat to nailing down your brand message.

There are a lot of things you need to take into account—not just on the copy side but on what you want to convey in your brand message as well.

But no matter how hard it gets, don’t settle and use uninspired buzzwords that don’t add anything to your brand.

If you want a message that conveys what it’s supposed, you have to do most, if not, all of the above. Be authentic and make sure it reflects the best you could offer and only then it’s sure to convert!