Forget “Secret Sauce.” Your business is missing a secret SEASONING.

Brand Strategy, Copywriting

CaTEGORY

6/16/2020

POSTED

Forget “Secret Sauce.” Your business is missing a secret SEASONING.

katie pannell

 Self proclaimed madwoman & copywriter extraordinaire. Offended by fluffy copy, industry clichés & made-up -preneur words. I put personality on paper so you can make bank just by being you.

These are a few of my favorite things:

- my musician husband, Chayse
- our kitten Eleanor Rigby (& The Beatles)
- midcentury music & decor
- messy buns & winged eyeliner
- telling everyone I'm an enneagram 4w3
- orange kitchen appliances
- brass candlesticks & depression glass
- an old fashioned and a jazz ballad

SHOP HERE

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Before the world turned upside, people used to get together with their friends pretty frequently! My friends and I liked to go thrift shopping, get manicures, or just drive-thru Chic-fil-a for an iced cold sweet tea and gossip. It was great! 

Sometimes, we’d even get a little crazy and go to the grocery store together (Maskless! I know! How provocative!) cook lunch and eat it picnic-style, cross-legged on yoga mats on my back porch. 

Those were the days. 

One time, a friend brought us a watermelon. I didn’t have the heart to tell her I wasn’t really a watermelon fan. She probably thought otherwise because I had to have a cute circular watermelon beach towel, but the truth is, I only bought it because it matched my red nails, and green suit. I digress. 

She lugged this big ass watermelon into the house, and we comically sliced it open with the largest (read: dullest) knife I had. 

As I bit into it, and the juice ran down my chin I thought “Oh this isn’t as boring as I remembered. Maybe I do like watermelon.” 

And in that moment, she grabbed a shaker of something from her purse. HER PURSE. I realize this is normal behavior for some people–like Tabasco mini keychain people–but I didn’t expect her to be a BYOS kinda gal.

It was Tajin chile lime seasoning.

And she put it on her watermelon. 

At first, I was confused. Then I put a little chile lime on my slice and my taste buds transcended into the Heavens. 

A simple solution to the fruit that I thought was only aesthetically pleasing, and not worth energy it takes to cut the damn thing: chile lime seasoning.

Needless to say, I bought a bottle. (And it makes an excellent dip with sour cream!)

For lack of a better segue, I’ll just come right out with it. Most of you could use a little chile lime seasoning for your business. 

Take Instagram for instance: it’s aesthetically pleasing, but the “I help” statement trend has GOT. TO. GO. 

It’s bland. It’s flavorless. 

Frankly, it sucks. 

Bios. Follow threads. Facebook group recommendations. Referral pitches. ALL OF IT could use a little chile lime seasoning.

What it is: A one-liner to get people talking (to you, or about you)

What it isn’t: A pitch.

Here’s an example from a Facebook post:

(Side note: should trademark the phrase “chile lime line” because it’s genius and I’m humble? 😉 )

The chile lime line here isn’t even about me. It’s about old ladies hitting on my husband.

Why it works:

“But I’ll be damned if it didn’t cause me to be interested.”

THANK YOU. CASE AND POINT.

I cropped the commenter for anonymity but she poses a good question. One I’m asked literally every time I bring up my chile lime line idea.

“What if my life is not entertaining?” or “What if I’m boring?”

To that, I say: read this. Also, you’re not.

Here are a few tips to writing a cool chile lime line to get people talking.

  1. Make someone laugh.
  2. Make someone stop and think.
  3. State a strong opinion.
  4. Challenge a belief.
  5. Remember that it doesn’t have to relate to your job.
  6. It doesn’t have to be about you at all!
  7. There is no formula or template for it.
  8. It can be as weird as you want.
  9. It doesn’t have to say “I help” for the Pete’s sake. (Who is Pete btw?)
  10. I’m running a chile lime challenge! SIGN UP NOW.

 

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