If you’ve worked with us (or even if you just read our blog), you know we do a lot of preaching about knowing your audience. But there’s another thing we want you to know: how to talk to your audience.

To discover what is being communicated, we typically start by asking a business what they want their audiences to know about them. If the first few words coming back at us include a list of services or what sounds like chest beating, we know we have our work cut out for us.

Now, some of you may be reading this and thinking, “But I just want my customers to know what we do and that we have the best service. That’s why they should buy from us.” If that’s the case, read this blog post a few times.

Take a deep breath. Now, tell me what your competitors are saying. Does their spiel sound pretty much the same as yours? If so, it’s time to get to work.

Here’s how to figure out how to talk to your customers.

First, ask yourself, “Why is what I do different from my competition?” Now, try not to use the following words when you answer: service, value, trust or integrity. These are all words your competitors can say too. It doesn’t mean these are not important descriptors—they are—but they are not unique. These standards are what will help you keep the customer… but you have to get them first.

If you have trouble coming up with a solid answer to what makes you different, consider what you do best and what pain point you are relieving for your customer. Sometimes this may be something they are seeking and not getting elsewhere, which could include why you are different from your competition, rather than a particular service offering.

Now, build a bridge of relevance. Make what you are saying relevant to the customer’s needs by concisely messaging information in a way that will be music to your customer’s ears.

As soon as you start reverting back to a list of plain Jane services, start over again.

Consumers are constantly beaten over the head with noise. But, music? Not so much. Just another tip to help you stand out in a crowd.