The simple way to maximise your company messaging.
Trying to build a business without the ability to explain what you do quickly and clearly is like banging your head against a brick wall. How can you attract that investor, convert that customer, engage that partner if they don’t really understand what you have to offer? And if your business happens to involve complex technology in an emerging market (like the cleantech industry), effective company messaging is absolutely fundamental.
If you’re setting priorities for 2017, I strongly recommend you start with honestly asking yourself if your messaging is good enough. After all, it’s the foundation for everything else. Your new website, logo, PR campaign can wait. In fact, none of them will work properly if you don’t get your messaging right first. Honestly, this might be the least tangible but most important service we offer at Life Size Media.
But what if you’re very early stage, fully aware that your messaging isn’t working and struggling to work out how you can improve it without the help of an agency?
The good news is that there are steps you can take yourself to improve your company messaging. Block out a day, get your key people together, be prepared to challenge yourself and give this exercise a try.
Try our key messaging exercise
Start by brainstorming a list of all the things you want people to understand about your business. Keep each point short and succinct, just a few words. Don’t worry about language at this stage, just focus on content. It might start something like this:
- Market leader in France
- 90% efficient
- Backed by 10 years of research
- And so on…
Then pick a key stakeholder. It could be a dream client, a target investor or a key influencer in government. Imagine three scenarios in which you manage to get some time with this person.
|1. You bump into them in a lift. You have one minute to pitch your business|
|2. You’ve got their attention and they invite you to jump in a taxi with them on the way to their next meeting. You have another ten minutes to explain your business in more detail.|
|3. They like what they hear in the taxi and suggest you have dinner that evening. You have a whole hour to really tell the story of your business.|
Get a big sheet of paper or a white board and divide it into three columns (1 min, 10 min, 1 hour). Your three most important messages go in the first column (yes, only three), then choose another three messages for the taxi ride. The rest will have to wait for dinner.
Using your company messaging
The final stage is to use those sets of messages as a guide for writing your messaging out in full prose. Each of the time scenarios we have used in this exercise will relate to a section of your company messaging.
The lift > one line, for example:
The taxi > one paragraph, for example:
The dinner > one page, for example:
If you found this exercise useful, this is one of several exercises that we work through with our clients at Life Size Media workshops.
The purpose of these workshops is to identify the foundations for your unique brand and generate guidelines that you can use as you build your identity. We cover:
- Understanding your business
- Defining the personality of your brand
- Identifying your key messages and how to use them
- Mapping how and where people experience your brand
- Taking this work forward