First — I’m game to meet any agency owner in the pub of their choice in London! I love hanging out in those authentic holes in the wall, imagining all of the conversations that have taken place there. But…this is about more than meeting you in a pub. It’s about the language we use and how it helps or hurts us deliver clarity.
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Hey everybody! Drew McLellan from Agency Management Institute. This week, I am coming to you from London, England. One of the many things I love about London is the names of the pubs. If you’ve been here before, you know that they are quirky. The Dog and the Duck. The Old Red Cow. Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese. The Drunken Goat. These are the kinds of names that the pubs have here. And the reason why is most of these pubs have been around since the 1600s or 1700s. And back then, most of the population was illiterate. And so, the pub owners knew that they had to do something visual and easy to remember, very clear, so that everyone in the neighborhood would remember the pub and form an affinity to it and come back and spend more money. And so, what they would do is they would go to a local sign-maker and they would figure out what sort of visual, like a dog and a duck, they could put on a sign that they would hang from chains in front of their pub, and that was how they named their pub. It was really just, what is a visual that somebody else in the neighborhood isn’t using that is very clear? And then, eventually, over time, they also put the words either on the sign or on the building. But it was really all about the visual and the clarity of that visual back in the day. And, you know, I think there is something to be learned from that. When I visit agency websites and when I talk to other folks who visit agency websites like Prospect’s, one of the things they tell us is that sometimes we try too hard to be clever. And in our attempt to make ourselves look different than every other agency out there, we describe ourselves using words or jargon that they don’t understand, that we don’t say we do websites or we do SEO or we do lead generation, but instead we concoct some sort of a name or a phrase but instead we concoct some sort of a name or a phrase to differentiate us from everybody else who does the same deliverables. How we do it is, of course, different and we want to use language to describe that. But the truth of the matter is when someone goes shopping for an agency, first of all, they’re looking for an agency. One of the funniest things that I find is that for many of you, you shy away from using the word agency. That’s what they’re looking for. That’s what they’re searching for. So, like the pub owners of London, England, I think you need to assume that you need to keep it super simple for your audience. I’m not suggesting they’re illiterate, but I am suggesting that they are looking at a lot of sites very quickly. And if they can’t, in an instant, discern what it is you do and whether or not you can solve their problem, they’re going to move on. So, think about those pub signs. Think about how you could make something absolutely clear and hang it from a chain, figuratively, from your website so that everybody knows who you are and what you do. All right? I’ll talk to you next week.