The public is overwhelmed reading and hearing marketing messages that may have worked to attract them just a few years ago. But today, the consumer is a bit more cautious with where they spend their money and who they hire and trust. We must communicate our value proposition and differentiate ourselves from our competition. Many of us know this and agree yet, it is also true many of us freeze with performance anxiety if we need to stand up and introduce our service in a less than one minute presentation to a group of strangers. And if you’ve witnessed other people introduce themselves around a room, you may have also experienced some of the odd deliveries which come from fear of not knowing what to say. I recently heard a woman stand up and tell everyone in the room they should use her service because she specializes in everything. The look of bewilderment on those in room when she said this was quite entertaining to say the least. Did she not know what ‘specializing” meant? Or did she think everyone would call her for everything they could ever need because she specializing in “everything!” The reality is that she herself knows she doesn’t specialize in everything, she was just so nervous about having to tell a room full of strangers what she does and why they should call her. Chances are she didn’t really know why people should call her because she probably can’t narrow down exactly what she does and deliver her value proposition in less than a minute. What she really wanted to do was talk about her business for an hour and froze with fear when she needed to get her point across in a short and concise message.
Mark Twain wrote, “I didn’t have time to write a short letter, so I wrote a long one instead.”This sums it up. It presents the fact that short and concise messages take work. Being able to comfortably command a brief, crisp description of who you are and what you do not only gets your message across, it also speaks to the fact that you really “know” what you do.
In a tight economy with tough competition, it is important you know who you are, what you do and how to get that message across. This is the first impression you will make for the public to separate the real players from the pretenders. So if you are serious about what you do, get serious about your message. You only get one chance to make a first impression!