One of the most important aspects of marketing and sales is empathy. But it’s a fine line: too empathetic and you seem fake, not empathetic enough and you seem robotic.

Right now, we’re living in a time where companies are trying so hard to seem empathetic that it’s becoming anything but. We get it, we’re in a pandemic (*Gasp!* we broke an unspoken rule by saying it outright!) The level of jargon is becoming so robotic that some have described it as being akin to “an awkward, unwanted hug.” It’s well-meaning, but not entirely welcome, and a little uncomfortable.

It’s getting so far from empathetic, that we’ve even created a BINGO game around the COVID-19 Jargon:

COVID-19 Marketing Jargon Bingo

Now, we’re not saying that these aren’t important messages, but when we’re getting the same message across the board, it feels pretty soulless, and has the exact opposite of the intended effect.

So how do you fight through the jargon while remaining empathetic?

We have some tips:

1. Be Original

You can draw inspiration from brands you admire, but don’t copy them verbatim. See what you like and take the good bits, but make it your own. Every single brand should not have the exact same message. That’s boring and doesn’t usually apply to every audience.

By being original, you’ll connect more with your audience and leave a lasting mark on their perception of you and your company/brand.

2. Be Yourself

Every single person, company, or brand has their own voice. Have you discovered yours yet? Perhaps you joke more, perhaps you’re more blunt. Who do you want to be to your contacts?

If you’re a solopreneur or one-person business, the brand voice and tone can be your own, just make sure you understand which voice is yours, and which belongs to your brand.

3. Don’t Be Scared to Be Human

We cannot stress this enough. Oftentimes, companies try so hard to remain professional that they lose their humanity. Yes, professionalism is important, but being human is moreso. People love to feel like they’re engaging with an actual person. Keep it light-hearted with memes and emojis, even swear if you want to (this is definitely not for everyone, but the world has changed!) As long as you’re being true to yourself, people will feel that and be more attracted to your brand.

Take this post for example, is it slightly unprofessional to make fun of well-meaning brand jargon? Sure. But are we just saying what everyone else is thinking? We think so.

Give it a try, we think you’ll like the results.