Everyone Has A Story – What’s Yours?
When we ask someone the core question of “So, what do you do?” there are a few answers you never hear:
“We run a me-too operation.”
“I’m a mediocre doctor/lawyer/landscaper.”
“We do just enough to keep the client from complaining.”
You never hear those answers, because most people don’t believe them to be true about themselves or their organizations. The professional world often appears to be like Lake Wobegon, where everyone is above average.
But in reality, are you and your firm above average in your professional world? And if so, how? In many ways, this is the first question that has to be answered when defining your brand – you can’t convince your clients that you are offering differentiated product/service if you can’t define what your strengths are. And if you can’t define or differentiate yourself you’ll have a hard time uncovering your story.
As a PR professional, taking part in the development of my clients’ story has consistently been one of the more enjoyable (and occasionally frustrating) aspects of the business. I love helping our clients find their story. We are frequently given the opportunity to interact with clients and prospects that are truly among the strongest in their field. The rewarding part of the job for me, though, has been working with them to scrape through the layers of detail and data to help them to find The Message – the best way for them to truly convey their brand value in a meaningful way.
This process to find your story can happen quickly or it can sometimes take time as we look to answer some core questions:
- What is it that sets your business apart?
- How are you different from your competitors?
- Once you’ve moved past your elevator pitch, how do you answer the follow-up questions that might arise?
- Does your initial messaging stand up under heavy scrutiny?
- In short, how do you convince your relevant audience that you are indeed above average?
Remember, great questions lead to great stories and in my experience, once you’ve thought through the above and have solid, concrete answers – you’re ready to share your story.
What about you? How do you arrive at the core of your own message?
To reach Donna: