How not to overwhelm people

When you’re putting together information (for customers, or your target audience) how much is too much?

Details, details. Is it better to go light or heavy on the details? You want to be open and forthcoming with information, but on the other hand you don’t want to overwhelm people, do you?

Here’s a good way to work it out. Do both. Create something that is catchy and quick to read: something that anyone can absorb and understand readily. Then prepare something else which is comprehensive, honest, and anticipates the kind of questions people will ask you.

When do you use one or the other?

The quick read is for grabbing people’s attention. This is useful for a business of any size, from household names to new startups and cottage industries. It’s about getting in front of people and (hopefully) piquing their interest.

The comprehensive detailed version is for people who come looking for you and what you have to offer. Big name companies with high recognition, a loyal customer base and consumer trust are most likely to have people seek them out. But it’s also possible to be the smaller guy and achieve the same thing. You’ll get people seeking you out if your product or service is a great fit for their needs, and this usually means that it’s the perfect solution for a problem they have.

What if you’re in a competitive industry? A lot of us are. Marketers will tell you that it’s standard to have to get your company’s name in front of people several times before they will respond and engage with you. How do you do that? Grab the quick read that you prepared, and get it circulating. This could be in the form of advertising (on- and off-line), sponsorship, social media, activity on forums, landing pages, competitions, networking, blogging, getting other bloggers to review your product or endorse you, etc. Nothing spammy, of course.

To recap: short and snappy gets their attention (perhaps not straight away, but persistence pays off); detailed and comprehensive will answer their questions when they come looking for you. Be prepared for both scenarios.

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