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The Secret to Shorter, More Effective Messaging

September 16, 2011  
Observing that the typical short (<25 word) marketing message produces almost nothing of value, Adele Revella has set herself to correcting this grave error.

According to Revella, the typical business product is a multi-tasker with a long list of features and benefits, meaning we have to get its key merits out effectively without overwhelming readers. But there are other priorities that distract from brevity:

  • Explaining all the new features
  • Differentiating the product from the competition (and tossing shout-outs to other products from the same suite)
  • Using good SEO terms
  • Satisfying internal template requirements

That being said, nothing on the above list takes the user into account. And that is the type of thinking that turns a potentially punchy message into a tedious summary.

How to make a small message a big seller? Turn it active and “social”-conscious. Consider the difference between these two messages:

  • Our solutions have been tailored to fit your industry business processes, your customer strategies, and your success criteria.
  • Listen to free Internet radio, find new music based on old and current favorites.

The first is an anonymous vendor. The second message comes from Pandora Radio. Which one speaks to you?

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  • by Adele Revella Fri Sep 16, 2011 via web

    Thanks for talking about this important topic, Marketing Profs!

    It's great that marketers have taken on the challenge of content marketing, but the effort only makes sense when the "content of the content" is meaningful and non-obvious. Marketers need to focus on learning as much as they can about what really matters to their buyers.

  • by Nick Stamoulis Mon Sep 19, 2011 via web

    "The best path to effective sales messaging is the user’s path."3

    Couldn't agree more! Sometimes we as marketers get caught up in our own actions so much that we forget to look at our sites/content like the user. They don't have the insider knowledge that we do, how does that affect their experience?

  • by Angela Natividad Tue Sep 20, 2011 via web

    I'm glad you both liked the article (I am the author)! Adele, I couldn't agree with you more; Nick, one of the biggest blindspots I think marketers have is that they often forget they're users too. It's simple enough, but an immense strength once tapped.

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