Printing Impressions

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TJ Tedesco

View from Mount Olympus

By TJ Tedesco

About TJ

T.J. is team leader of Grow Sales, Inc., a marketing and social media services company operating at the intersection of compelling content, clear vision and quality communication practices. In this blog, fire is a metaphor for print. Hang on, this ride will be weird...

Prometheus crept into Mt. Olympus, stole fire, returned to the lowlands, ran from house to house distributing it, got caught, was chained to a rock, lost his liver to a huge ugly bird and was rescued by Hercules. Leveraging his fame, Prometheus started Fire Enterprises Inc.  (FEI). Since fire was the hottest technology of the time, company success came fast and furious. Two generations later, fire isn't such an easy sale. Now led by Prometheus' grandson Org, FEI's growth is non-existent, competitors are pounding and prices are in the toilet.
 

The FEI Tribe Discusses the Concept of 'Messaging'

 
Last time, the Fire Enterprises, Inc. (FEI) tribe went over the creation of a “Unique Selling Proposition.” This week, Marka, Zoot and Brandy the messaging and branding guru discuss how to use the concept of “messaging” to create compelling communications and positive customer experiences. Remember, fire = print.

Marka sat at her usual stool in the Red Argus, explaining FEI’s new Unique Selling Proposition to Brandy, the branding and messaging whiz who also happened to brew up one Hades' of a grog.

“Nice USP,” Brandy said. “I hate to take the wind out of your toga, but staying ‘on message’ involves more than just reciting your USP over and over again.”

Marka’s smile dropped into a frown. She had no idea what Brandy would suggest next.

Brandy didn’t even try to hide the smug look on her face. “I’ll give you a clue,” she said. “When a customer reads one of your O-newsletters, or scans your O-mailer, he or she should walk away with an understanding of why FEI is the first name in fire. Your written communications must focus on demonstrating your USP and core competencies to your target audience.”

 “So good messaging means letting the customer know what FEI can do for them,” Marka said.

“Yes,” Brandy replied. “Use your communications as platforms to remind customers of your dependability, innovation and quality. There are many ways to do this.”

Brandy grabbed a cocktail napkin and started writing:

• Providing valuable information or industry experience.

• Addressing a specific customer concern or general industry concern.

• Demonstrating how FEI offers safety, convenience and peace of mind to the customer.

• Showcasing new products, updated technology and new hires.

• Explaining how your core competencies fulfill market need.

Zoot and Numo walked through the door. As usual, Zoot wore his classy blue toga while frugal Numo’s was made of ragged cloth.

“What’s the good word?” Zoot asked.

“We’re talking about staying ‘on-message,’” Marka said.

“Good thing I came along. I had a few ideas for what ‘on message’ should mean to our sales force.”

“Go on,” Marka said. What could Zoot possibly have to say about messaging? She wondered.

“I call it ‘the grand opening attitude,’” Zoot continued. “Our salespeople should act like each customer is FEI’s first visitor on opening day. This means demonstrating that we consistently make and keep commitments, show empathy and provide solutions to problems.”

“It’s certainly worked for you,” Brandy noted. “I’ve heard many good things about how pleased people are with FEI’s runner’s.”

“I have many more ideas for creating good customer service habits for FEI,” Zoot said.

“It’s your business not mine, Marka, but how about creating an FEI ‘messaging document’ so your marketing and sales teams can easily stay on message every time,” Brandy suggested.

“What would be included?” enquired Marka.

“Start with your USP and add core talking points,” Brandy responded. “Get down in the trenches, talk with all of Zoot’s runners, collect the best of what you hear, create a new living, breathing messaging document and use it a clearinghouse for communicating great ideas.”

“Brandy, this is a great idea!” Marka shouted, taking a big swig of yellow grog. “The toughest part of new projects is getting started. These talking points will make our workflow better!”

“My team would certainly benefit from it too!” Zoot added, gazing out the window watching the soft orange sun slowly dipping behind Mt. Olympus.

Next week: Zoot explains more of his best practices for creating positive customer experiences.


FIRE! In Action

OB/Gyn’s New Marketing Program Increases Referrals

Jose Aun, MD, an OB/GYN in Texas, trained his staff to thank referrers, follow up on missed or cancelled appointments and create and maintain a rapport with patients. With the help of this commitment to the company’s core values, Dr. Aun’s referrals  increased by 50%.
 

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