Be ruthlessly focused

Screen Shot 2016-06-17 at 07.35.52There’s seven months to go and we’re planning already.

It’s for a small event in February one of my clients is going to; there are only 100 or so exhibitors and about 250 visitors. But we still have to get the most out of it. If we’re going to spend the time and energy it’s got to deliver a return.

In early November several hundred small and medium businesses are going to turn up at Stoneleigh Park in Warwickshire for the local Chamber’s CW Expo. The same is true for all of them. To make the most of the time, energy and money, you have to plan.

There are all sorts of things you can do before the event and at the venue to draw attention to your business. But at the heart of everything is your message.

It has to resonate, capture the attention of your target audience or there’s no point.

So how do you get it right?

There are three steps:

  1. Be completely clear about what you are trying to achieve.
  2. See the world through your customers’ eyes so you can fit what you have to offer into what they want to hear.
  3. And be ruthlessly focused. You haven’t got the time to say everything!

Start with what the delegates care about and what you want to say, then look for the overlap.

To work it out, ask yourself a few questions. Why are you exhibiting? What are you selling? What are the best bits about you and what you’re selling? Why do people buy from you?

The answer to this last question can be a bit tricky.

We all have a view about what we think we have to offer but our customers, clients and prospects may have quite a different idea. We might think it’s our shiny new widget but if we bother to ask it could be that what they really value, what sets us apart is the way we make them feel when they deal with us.

Now for the other side of the equation.

Who are the people you want to connect with and what’s on their mind? You need to be crystal clear because your messages have to strike a chord. They need to feel you’re talking directly to them.

Like it or not people are interested in me, myself, I. Above everything we care about ourselves, our pleasures and our frustrations.

Put aside your preconceived ideas and try a little empathy. Think about the pressures on their life, the challenges they face, what they need to get the job done, how you can help.

Then overlay what you want to say with what they want to hear. Your messages sit in the overlap.

Finally, be ruthlessly focused. You won’t have long to grab the attention of the delegates and they’ll want to see quite a few of the exhibitors. So work out your single most important point and direct all your energies on that.

Get in touch if would like an independent perspective on your messaging.

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By Cathy Connan

I'm an integrative psychotherapist. I help people invest in their wellbeing and live the life they want.