Get out of First, Engage in Second, Review through Third... | The Marketing Network
Content strategy to propel your business into top gear

You are not reading the review about the latest marvel of German engineering as it glides through some secret track testing location in Stuttgart! I’m talking about utilising points of view to propel your business into top gear with better content strategy online and more results driven copywriting for your marketing collateral, blog, website, social media, etc.

1st Person Narrative:
The story is relayed by a narrator who is also a character within the story, so that the narrator reveals the plot by referring to this viewpoint character as “I” (or, when plural, “we”).

This point of view needs to be used very sparingly in marketing, as it takes the reader or the message recipient’s focus away from themselves and we all know that station “W.I.F.M – What’s In It For Me” is the only one that the audience listens to.

2nd Person Narrative:
Probably the rarest mode in literature (though quite common in song lyrics) is the second-person narrative mode, in which the narrator refers to one of the characters as “you”, therefore making the audience member feel as if he or she is a character within the story. Every good advertisement, PR story, blog entry, sales letter, email, etc takes us on a journey, it tells a story, no matter how short it is, it is interesting enough to engage us.

Second person narrative is the most useful and proven method of engaging with your audience and influencing them through the written word positively to: buy your product, perceive you differently, take action, vote, etc

Unfortunately most authors of SME marketing materials, do not utilise copywriting in a scientific manner and do not treat it as multiplied salesmanship!

The “we’s” on the average website outnumber the “you’s” at a ratio of at least 2 : 1, and show, in a subconscious way, that an internal focus, rather than being customer focused.

On the other hand if you look at work by customer focused marketers, you will find their copywriting utilising “you v we” ratios of closer to 3 : 1 in favour of “you”.

3rd Person Narrative:
Third-person narration provides the greatest flexibility to the author and thus is the most commonly used narrative mode in literature. In the third-person narrative mode, each and every character is referred to by the narrator as “he”, “she”, “it”, or “they”, but never as “I” or “we” (first-person), or “you” (second-person). In third-person narrative, it is necessary that the narrator be merely an unspecified entity or uninvolved person that conveys the story, but not a character of any kind within the story being told.

This is the preferred point of view of the bigger ‘corporate’ organisations. Unfortunately, in many cases, the customer or prospect walks away from the experience with this big brand feeling as if they are a “number and not a member!”

Third person is however useful when you need to:
– convey a more authoritative tone
– sound more objective than first or second person writing.

Although third person is the language we’re used to reading in our daily media, third person writing is also more distant, which is a disadvantage if you want to engage your reader.

Reminder:
As we all know, marketing success comes from adopting a customer centric point of view; what we all sometimes forget is that it is important to communicate this point of view, after all if you don’t illustrate this to your customers, they simply won’t know. Perception is Reality.

Are you connecting with your customers? Call the Marketing Network and see how we can improve the perceptions your customers and prospects have about your business.

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