I asked Mecki how her website was working and she expressed how she wanted to reach more abortion minded women – so the website we built for her needs to work much harder. Please pray that abortion minded women in La Habra California will find lifecentersoforangecounty.com and that they will read the gently worded statements that are designed to encourage young people to come in and talk about whether abortion is really the solution they would enjoy choosing.
When I first met Mecki in person at the ATI (Advanced Training Institute with International Life Services) we had just started working on her website a bit earlier. This year Heather, my wife, accompanied me to the ATI. Heather who found the large conference room a little chilly was warmly welcomed by Mecki with an offer to use her shawl to keep warm. This made a wonderful first impression! I am glad that Mecki went out of her way to welcome my wife.
While working with Mecki, I learned a few important lessons.
At one point, Mecki let me talk her into changing her organization’s name from Life Centers to a ‘more abortion minded audience sensitive name’ such as Women’s Center with the reasoning that “Life Centers” would sound Pro-Life and the primary audience would be repelled by a Pro-Life sounding name. Then, my colleague Joshua Moor provided some pushback to the direction we were going, talking about the expense of a name change and how there must be a better way. I found myself wanting to go back to the whiteboard to look for a better way – a way to not repel the primary audience, not require the work/expense of a name change and this when I found a beautiful new tactic. Framing! Intentionally creating context for content! We would frame the name in order to connect the word life to an acceptable meaning.
The ultimate solution was built around framing the name before we mentioned the name in order to reduce/remove the possibility of connecting the word life in the center’s name with the idea - Pro-Life. We created a slogan that read “Your Life. Your Choice. You have time…be informed” The first statement of “Your life.” connects the word life to the young woman’s life. This allowed us to setup the word ‘Life’ in the organizations name to be about the young audience member - trumping the connection to Pro-Life. Continuing, “Your choice.” speaks truth to the situation while connecting with our primary audience, using language that is attractive to an abortion minded young person. Then we turn a corner in the slogan with the final statement of “You have time…be informed” which tells someone to slow down – breathe – look around – think about this – look for some information while also implying that we can provide this information that is worth slowing down for.
iRapture.com provided editing and content polishing on this site and I would like to share a few examples that turned out very well.
This site is full of statements that are very well written to communicate with a woman who may be thinking of getting an abortion and who we would like to encourage to walk through the door way of our counseling room. For example, “your plans didn’t include a pregnancy” can help the abortion minded woman quickly identify that she is at the website for her. “We want to help you make an informed choice about your unplanned pregnancy.” is a fantastic example of content strategy work to communicate that the abortion minded visitor is at the right place and that help is available.
In California, centers were being required to post statements on their website that would say “We don’t provide or refer for abortions.” A statement like this could repel the target audience who we are trying to help. We took this requirement and wrote it in a way that would allow us to state our position while not turning away the people that we would like to help. We wrote, “We hope that before rushing into an abortion we have a chance to assist you in seeking long-term solutions to your current problems. You might want to consider an Alternative to Abortion: Adoption or parenting are both life-giving choices.” I thought this worked toward arguably satisfying the new legal requirement while not driving away the people that we would like to reach.
A donate button is really just for donors and not meant for clients of a pregnancy center. With Mecki funding her pregnancy center mostly from her savings she did not want to invest in a separate website for the small donor base that assisted her. She wanted a donate button on the client site and so we used our new framing idea to try and improve the donate button’s existence on this site. We ended up having content created for the donate page that talked about the local community giving to make these services free which ended up providing justification of why services were being made available for free. So the donate button ended up being framed to support the main target audience, the abortion minded woman, even though it is there to allow the secondary target audience of donors a way to donate with an echeck or credit card.
Mecki used iRapture.com to rewrite all of the content on her site to try and improve its readability and effectiveness for her target audience. I think this work has become an example of good content for a pregnancy center websites.
If you would like to have your website’s content rewritten, I am looking for new challenges!
Jacob Barr is the owner and CEO of iRapture.com.
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