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mrtadebayo's Avatar mrtadebayo mrtadebayo is offline
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I or WE ?

when approaching businesses, is it better to approach them using personalisation by I or making yourself sound big by using WE and also with approaching and talking to customers and clients?
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missfituk's Avatar missfituk missfituk is offline
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You should always use 'we', it isnt to make yourself sound bigger or better, its simply professional to use the "generic we" and the "generic you" (standard terms in the business register). "I" isnt part of a business register, unless your business is something entirely dependent on you such as being a child minder, or a cleaner. Where you arent the focus point of the business, "I" is amateurish, and I if I read someones leaflets/website/flyer... that discussed their business as 'I' it would probably subconsciously put me off using them.

However... the first thing Id think if I saw a business referring to itself as 'I' would be "theyre gonna be cheap". Because I would think they are a small, maybe start up, new business trying to get work, new to the industry etc etc and I could get something done really cheaply off them.
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Scott-Copywriter Scott-Copywriter is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrtadebayo View Post
when approaching businesses, is it better to approach them using personalisation by I or making yourself sound big by using WE and also with approaching and talking to customers and clients?
I don't quite agree with Miss Fit.

It depends how you market yourself and what your business model is like. You either have two options:

- A business with employees (we).
- A professional freelancer/sole trader (I).

If you provide a good quality professional service by working alone then it's good to call yourself 'I' as it gives a more personal approach. Many businesses prefer working for a freelance professional who can personalise services better. That's the approach I take.

If you run any kind of business (i.e. product based) then it might be worthwhile calling yourself 'we'. It depends on what you're selling and who you're selling it to.
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MikeTye MikeTye is offline
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I bugs me when people working by themselves say 'we'! I always think that if someone says 'I' then it makes me think that its going to be a lot more of a personal service rather than having a huge group of unnecessary employees having loads of board meetings over nothing. Thats just the image I get in my head when I hear we or I
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am:pm graphics's Avatar am:pm graphics am:pm graphics is offline
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I think if it is just you then use 'I'. Always best to be open and honest and there is nothing wrong with 'I'. Lots of people might prefer it and you will come across as more 'freelance'..which can be a good thing.

Pauline
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carolinem's Avatar carolinem carolinem is offline
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If you use the royal "we" to try and sound bigger, then it might come off as lying about your business. I vote use "we" if you mean a group of people, and use "I" if you mean yourself.

"We can do that for you" implies that you have a team and a back up if say you get sick or get swamped with other work. "I can do that for you" sounds like a personal guarantee the work is going to get done.
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missfituk's Avatar missfituk missfituk is offline
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Like I said, if the business is based on you, ie, graphic design, IT repair... then yes, 'I' is fine (I said this is my earlier post but it seems to have been overlooked) but if it is product based, regardless of how many people work in the business, it should be we. I own and run Miss Fit entirely by myself, we have no employees, but I wouldnt dream of putting 'I' on my website and when discussing the business, its just not the done thing when youre trying to convey a professional image
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Juststartingup Juststartingup is offline
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i would have always went with 'we', but after reading Scott-Copwriter's post I agree it is dependent upon circumstance. However, I always lean towards we.
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carolinem's Avatar carolinem carolinem is offline
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What would happen if your clients/prospects asked you directly?

Client: "So Business Owner, how many of you work there?"
You Option 1: (out and out lie) Yes, we have X number of people
You Option 2: (fudge it) We have a variety of subcontractors who help us
You Option 3: (honesty) Actually it's just me.

I think you should be honest because it will bite you in the butt. Somehow "I'm sick so I can't get your order out" seems more sympathetic than "We are all sick and can't get your order out". Or "I'm snowed under because my tax return is due - I'll get back to you on Tuesday" sounds better than "We can't get back to you till Tuesday because we are doing a tax return". What kind of a business is this, where they have numerous staff and still can't deliver? Or worse, you're forced to admit that actually you lied on all your marketing materials, in all your communications and in the impression you gave about your business.
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liams7 liams7 is offline
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I think it depends on what you are trying to achieve. Is it better for your business to sound bigger. If so use WE if you are a consultant and need to sound like a one man band use I it depends on the context.

Neither is right or wrong its what u want to protray. I dont think business care as long as you do the job.
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mrtadebayo's Avatar mrtadebayo mrtadebayo is offline
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Thanks for all your input, i think i agree with using it in the right context. i've spoke to suppliers before who work for big brands and when we relate they use "I" and that makes me more comfortable knowing im dealt with on a man to man basis rather than me thinking if anything goes wrong i have a big business to deal with.
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Stuart.C's Avatar Stuart.C Stuart.C is offline
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I agree with Missfit Uk on this one. I think it also depends a little on the business you are running. Say you are running a freelance web design service entitled 'joeblogsamazingwebdesign', then I would expect to see 'I' used!
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