Why is it so hard to sum up your company or product in a few simple words? Like they say in the old spy movies, “you know too much!” As valuable as it is, all of the detail you have accumulated about your offering makes it very hard to boil it down for someone who doesn’t know (or care) as much as you do. And sadly customers and prospects NEVER know or care quite that much. If they did, they’d in your business instead of theirs.
I certainly struggle with this in my own business. My job is to help companies focus their messages into just those few simple words. Yet because I’ve done it for a long time and I’m passionate about it, I’m tempted to tell people way more than they want to know. Hmm. Bore customers with lots of detail about how I can help them be more concise. Probably not the perfect marketing tactic.
What helps? Sometimes a bit of ignorance. Bounce your story off of someone whose head isn’t cluttered with so much detail. Try summarizing your company’s value prop to a friend, your mom, or your dentist. Then have them feed it back to you. You may find that their version is shorter,clearer, and more powerful than yours! Someone who isn’t in your industry and doesn’t share your knowledge and assumptions is almost forced to have a higher-altitude view than you do.
A little structure helps too. Keeping your value prop short forces you to boil down to essentials. Write it down in 30 words or less. Test it out. Then try to reduce it to 10. Let me know how it goes.