The Value of Experts
I am continually amazed that the more I learn, in general, the less I seem to know about specifics. I wonder if my brain will hold only so much and then overflow the older stuff. Case in point: creating an important message for social media or email consumption.
Over the weekend, I got a call from someone on the East Coast looking for the “free, quick” consultation I offer on my website. He was having trouble crafting a short message for Facebook describing what his company offered and including a call for action that stressed benefits rather than features. He had a start but wasn’t happy with it. I asked some questions, visited his website and wrote a three-sentence post for him that thrilled him. He wanted more work that day, but I told him he’d exhausted the “free, quick” offer and that help with his follow-on projects would cost him.
I don’t know if he’ll pay anyone for the follow-on work or not. But I do know that if he does decide to pay for it, I’ll be the first person he calls. And I’ll get the work. Because I did a good job for him on a quick freebie, he knows that he’ll get expertise and value on a longer, working consulting job.
That story brings me to the topic of the value of paying for experts. I have an email message that needs to go out in the next couple of weeks to over 1,200 people. I consider that message critical to the launch of an important new activity and I spent a lot of time working on it contents. And then I did something really smart: I hired someone else to make it right. Based on my skills above, which clearly show me to be more than capable of doing things for myself, why would I do such a thing?
Forty-eight hours later, I had my answer. The passive voice that had crept in a couple of places was replaced with the active voice. The right words were converted to anchor text and the links were inserted where they worked the best. The flow of the message was improved, as was the call to action. I have got to say that I just hadn’t, and maybe even couldn’t, have paid as much attention to those details as did my expert copywriter. She punched up the words and grammar, optimized the message for search engines and made it far more appealing, in my view, to my intended audience. I really think the improved version will work much better and I’m happy to pay my expert for her work.
Are there things you aren’t so good at when you try to do them for yourself? Things you don’t use quite as critical an eye when producing for yourself than you would for a client? Then do what I did: hire someone else to do them for you. If you’re a marketer, why are you doing accounting work? If you are an accountant, why are you trying to play marketer? If you’re a designer, why are you trying to manufacture things yourself?
The value of an expert can mean the difference between the success and failure of your venture. Don’t take chances to try to save a few dollars. It may not even be penny-wise, let alone pound foolish. Let me know what you think. I’d love to hear your”war stories,” good and bad, and so would my readers I’d guess.
P.S: The copywriter who helped me on this project is Ms. Kristin O’Neill, www.KnockOutWords.com.