Creating Your Memorable Marketing Message

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Get Attention in 10 Seconds:

When someone asks you what you do, you must get that person's attention quickly. Here's how.


Communicating a message is easy when you have 30, 10, or even five minutes, as you are given in your Toastmasters speeches. But what do you do if you only have 10 seconds? In trying to network and generate interest in the services you and your business provide, many times you only have eight to 10 seconds to effectively explain what you do or offer, and then get people excited about it. This is called delivering your Memorable Marketing Message.

In fact, in those eight to 10 seconds you must accomplish two specific things: 1) You must engage the person you're talking to, and 2) You must determine if continuing this conversation on a professional level is worthwhile, or decide if this is just a personal relationship.

If you know someone is a viable candidate for your product or service, then you don't mind spending the time going into further detail about what you do. And if the person knows you are a valid supplier of something that fills a need he or she has, then the other person doesn't mind hearing more from you. So your ability to communicate a powerful message in that short time is absolutely necessary if you want to maximize your networking and marketing opportunities.

What exactly do you say in those 10 seconds? First, you must communicate the true value you deliver through your products and services. This means stressing the benefits, the value people get from the product or service, not just the product. So rather than saying you sell cars, you can say you actually help customers ride to work in comfort or help them safely transport their families. This is the true value of the product or service you deliver.

Then you must convey who you best serve. It would be nice to sell to everyone and be all things to all people. But in reality, if you look at your business and consider where your greatest profit comes from, you'll find that you best serve certain groups: a specific industry or company size or people in a certain income bracket or geographic area.

How can you say all that to people in networking situations? You can use the techniques you learn in Toastmasters to leave people with a very simple concept they can remember and tell others about.

Keep it Short. The most important rule for delivering your Memorable Marketing Message is to do it in less than 10 seconds. In networking situations, social settings or even at your Toastmasters meetings, when someone asks what you do, you must get that person's attention quickly. If you drone on and on, he or she will lose interest and start looking for someone else to talk to.

Use Simple Language. Your message must be understood by anyone, from an eighth grader to a computer programmer. Your fellow Toastmasters come from diverse backgrounds, and the people you meet in other settings do too. Leave out the technical jargon and the lofty language not everyone can relate to. If you help people understand what you do in very simple terms, then they can express their need for your product or service.

Make it Memorable. One of the main ideas behind a Memorable Marketing Message is to leave an impression on people. You must make your statement easy for people to remember and repeat so they will redeliver it on your behalf. Pay attention to the statement's flow and feel. Your message should roll off your tongue. If your friends and clients can't remember it, then they won't be able to repeat it to the people they come in contact with, and that's a missed opportunity.

When you make your message memorable, your current contacts can become a primary source for new clients simply through word-of-mouth.

Make Them Think. Another important function of your Memorable Marketing Message is to cause people to ask themselves whether they fit within the group you best serve, and whether they have a need for your product or service.
If they decide yes, then they will ask you the most important question: "How do you do that?" When a person asks this question, you have successfully interested him or her. This gives you the license to go into more detail about what you do, which opens the door for making the sale.

Put it to Use. The main purpose of a Memorable Marketing Message is to use it in networking environments, but it serves other purposes as well. You can use your Memorable Marketing Message to keep your organization on track. So whenever you approach a new business endeavor, you can look back at this statement and ask yourself how this new activity fits within it. Consider whether each new endeavor falls in line with what you really do and who you best serve. You can then use your Memorable Marketing Message to test every new project and client that comes your way.

Your Memorable Marketing Message also becomes the core of all your marketing efforts. By using it consistently throughout all your marketing campaigns, you can develop a reputation and increase name recognition in the marketplace. Essentially, marketing becomes the function of taking your Memorable Marketing Message and delivering it to your target audience in the marketplace.

You May Need More than One. Your organization may benefit from developing more than one Memorable Marketing Message if you serve a more diverse group of clients. For example, a security company won't want to approach their industrial clients with the same Memorable Marketing Message as they would their homeowner clients. They might develop a second statement for corporate clients, such as, "We work with businesses that need to secure their inventories and protect their assets." Then the statement they use will depend on the listener and his or her situation.

Or you might consider combining multiple ideal clients and multiple values into one statement. Using the security company again, they might say, "We work with home owners who are concerned about safety and businesses that need to protect their assets." If you decide to combine them, make sure you can deliver it in less than 10 seconds.

Try It Today!
Say your Memorable Marketing Message out loud. Are you comfortable with it? If not, why? Once you get it exactly right, memorize it. Repeat it over and over. It should flow from your tongue as if you've been repeating it for the past 20 years. It needs to sound natural, just like your Toastmasters speeches. You must say it with commitment and passion.

Now go out and try it. Test it on your fellow Toastmasters and observe the kinds of responses you get. When you use these tips, your message will be memorable.

Sam Stein is a Toastmaster in California.

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