This was something that I wrote in January 2013. I came upon it today and enjoyed re-reading it. I thought that it made sense to share it here. It wasn’t meant for publication when it was written.
I am hoping to capture a feeling. I am reading what I wrote about storytelling yesterday. The idea of creating a sense of what the product or brand creator wants to impart to the customer base is a good one. It is what I think is valuable about storytelling, writing, or using media to shape emotions that are related to the product or entity.
The feeling that I want to capture though is the feeling that I want to feel while creating this written content – the story. I would like to become immersed in the thoughts and emotions of a great experience. It can be as simple as the taste of wonderful coffee for Starbuck’s. Or perhaps a great experience driving a Fiat 500 or VW Beetle. These are not factually based. They are more about the cognition of feelings – good feelings.
This sort of writing and collaboration is premised upon a positive emotion. It is a contradiction to the terrible and extreme negativity of our lives today. It is a counterbalance to those messages of despair. Writing these positive and uplifting messages would be a happy experience, at least the way that I view things.
How much of this can be applied with good effect to more mundane brands and products? What can be said about less refined products or services than those created by billion dollar organizations? It depends I think.
Don’t forget the idea of always searching for new ways to add value to the business and the product or service being presented to the world. Never stop advancing!
This is a document that I created back in 2015 to introduce a new business. Instead, we ended up moving to the Florida Panhandle area and the business didn’t happen. I still like the idea, and frankly, have incorporated much of it into my current business thinking. I’ve merely broadened out the subject matter and still intend to contact the same sorts of businesses contemplated in this document.
I am posting it here because it illustrates some of my reasoning about the promotion of a business and how images and narrative can make an idea come to life. If you were a potential customer and received this PDF document by email, perhaps from a website, or as part of a presentation on a thumb drive, how would you view it? Isn’t it better than a verbal presentation, in that it’s tangible and creates a more concrete understanding of what the sales person is trying to convey? It works hand-in-hand with that person-to-person sales effort, in my opinion. Take a look.
Business owners and managers often make the mistake of seeking an ideal marketing or advertisement plan that is unrealistic for their business because of cost or complexity.
Sometimes simple ideas, simple repetition of basic principled efforts work best.
So what foundation does your business have? Usually there are certain things about the business that are known and appreciated; dependability for example.
What do potential customers think of your business? Do they even know that you exist at the moment? Do they have a sense of what you stand for? Your principles and your intentions? What have you told them? What can they see?
What can be changed to create a better image, more visibility, and a better understanding of the positive attributes of the products and services you offer?
Think about it. Make notes and discuss the ideas with your associates. What you think is basic and well understood about your business may not register with the customers. They need to be told about it and then told again another time and in a different manner. It’s your job to make these concepts, ideas, and principles clear.
I really like using PDF files. I like them because they can be developed and reused countless times. They don’t show age or get wrinkled or dirty as sales tools. They can be updated easily and changed to reapply them to multiple product offers.
PDF files can be tacked onto emails with ease. They can be used in websites as sales tools or to make technical information available to the customers. They can contain a mountain of information, or a simple one page presentation.
There is no business that couldn’t find significant value using PDF files to tell their story and to support the business model.
Why waste goodwill on bad communications? Once you have a customer – communicate! Let them know that they matter to you. Repeat sales are much easier than finding new customers over-and-over.
Recently I have been contemplating the use of a few of my proposals and the various images that I captured and used to promote additional sales. I hesitate only because what I was promoting was slightly different from what many small business owners are selling. My business was in commercial contracting, and I specialized in decorative stone, granite, terrazzo, and ceramic tile. Our promotions were directed at large scale developers, owners agents for government agencies, and construction managers on a regional scale (multi-state).
I will try to post a couple of these and see if I can walk through the thinking and also why I think that there are lessons within those efforts that scale to smaller businesses and businesses that are vastly different then this.
It seemed important to create this post as a prequel to what’s to come. I’d like to emphasis that we should be looking at how to take ideas from these proposals, rather than over-think the particulars of that singular business model.