Looking back, 2016 will be remembered for many things – BREXIT, the passing of many famous celebrities, political turmoil in the UK, Donald Trump, to name just a few.
One thing that struck me about the political year was that it became defined by slogans – ‘Let’s make America great again’ and ‘We want our country back’. The need to wrap everything up into a memorable, repeatable slogan promoting a simple ideology separate from the detail of policy is a by-product of the world we live in, where time is short, attention spans limited and social platforms are the primary sources of breaking news.
There is a lesson here for us all, around the importance of keeping things simple when communicating and trying to break through the noise. This was a point made to me recently by Daniel Priestley, author of Key Person of Influence. Over lunch, he explained how important it is to be able to summarise succinctly what it is you do, so that when you meet new people or prospects they ‘get it’ instantly and quickly establish your value. What do you do? What makes you different? What pain point do you solve?
I experienced this recently when an IT salesperson attempted to convey what his business did over the telephone. Two minutes into the call I had to stop him. He hadn’t paused for breath and was no nearer to telling me what value he could add to our business; it was a litany of industry acronyms and vernacular. He really needed to polish up his position and get to the point – to make the pitch sharp yet simple, condensed yet captivating.
Decision-makers are busier than ever, forced to prioritise the things that matter, which is often confused with being time poor. When you come into contact with them, you need to deliver a compelling message that impresses, impacts and initiates action. Those who do will inevitably achieve greater success, conversion and results.
See you out there.
Phil Jones MBE, Managing Director, Brother UK