11 years ago the Clue Train was written. I have talked about it before.
A powerful global conversation has begun. Through the Internet, people are discovering and inventing new ways to share relevant knowledge with blinding speed. As a direct result, markets are getting smarter—and getting smarter faster than most companies.
These markets are conversations. Their members communicate in language that is natural, open, honest, direct, funny and often shocking. Whether explaining or complaining, joking or serious, the human voice is unmistakably genuine. It can’t be faked.
Most corporations, on the other hand, only know how to talk in the soothing, humorless monotone of the mission statement, marketing brochure, and your-call-is-important-to-us busy signal. Same old tone, same old lies. No wonder networked markets have no respect for companies unable or unwilling to speak as they do.
But learning to speak in a human voice is not some trick, nor will corporations convince us they are human with lip service about “listening to customers.” They will only sound human when they empower real human beings to speak on their behalf.
While many such people already work for companies today, most companies ignore their ability to deliver genuine knowledge, opting instead to crank out sterile happytalk that insults the intelligence of markets literally too smart to buy it.
However, employees are getting hyperlinked even as markets are. Companies need to listen carefully to both. Mostly, they need to get out of the way so intranetworked employees can converse directly with internetworked markets.
Corporate firewalls have kept smart employees in and smart markets out. It’s going to cause real pain to tear those walls down. But the result will be a new kind of conversation. And it will be the most exciting conversation business has ever engaged in.
So, why on earth, 11 years later, are we still seeing the same on bullshit copy on ads?
IPSPs and hosting companies are absolutely hands down the worst at this. You could replace the logo on ANY billing or host ads and swop them around and no one would notice. Pictures of servers. People in suits. Money. etc. No sensible copy. All cliched, old fashioned, dull and something to ignore. No matter how much they spend on interrupting you, you will pay no attention.
So I am now making a free offer. Anyone reading this blog can use me to tweak copy on their next ad to make it more human and less painfully dull. Yes. Free. Limited to the first 3 people that email me.
If the parties are willing, we’ll do split a/b testing on the ads and post the results here. Should be an interesting experiment.