October 20, 2010 By
So what’s so important about having a signature program? There are many advantages for a business, not the least of which is that it is a sure-fire differentiation strategy. As a communications expert, I’m interested also in the fact that it streamlines what the heck you talk about when describing your business! When I attend networking meetings (which I still do occasionally), and certainly in my daily work with coaches, I consistently notice that they discuss several things they’ve got cooking. The brain can’t process all this information. It wants to know you’re doing one thing. So, in Session 6, one of the things I tell M&M is that they will now be speaking only about “Feast or Famine,” their portal event. On their website, ideally, they would have a squeeze page, inviting people only to this event—rather than explaining in detail all the things they offer. This always produces a big sigh of relief for my clients, who are always aware that typically their communication isn’t effective because they talk about too much. In this session, we also discuss possible copy for their promo- tional postcard and I emphasize the need for their couples to “self-identify”—to say, “That’s us!”—and to do it either in the headline or in the first paragraph, and certainly through- out the rest of the copy. So, I play around with a few possible headlines for them that satisfy this requirement, then we pull the first line of the copy straight out of their heads and gut: It (marriage, as referred to in the headline) hasn’t worked out the way you envisioned it, has it? So we’ve slammed them with two “self-identifying” questions in the headline and first sentence. Then we list several unwanted things in their lives that they never envisioned—things directly related to their financial stress, and we further “call them out” by discussing their particularly unique situation: that they make a good income but continually coming up short. This rules out other couples who don’t have that issue. Then we slip on M&M’s “older and wiser couple” persona with the next paragraph that begins, “We know.” And continues on with the brief story of their financial struggles twenty years ago and the constant fights they used to have, inserting some of the accusations they hurled at each other, which we know their market most certainly does as well. This is another self-identifying tactic. And we conclude that paragraph by saying, “we’ve weathered those storms and are here to show you how to, too.” Below that, in the center, is the title of their program and below that, centered, is the thesis argument of their “brand concept” (Remember that? It’s a teaching point around which their portal program revolves.) Theirs is that financial struggle is directly related to a secret communication cycle they can’t see. Below the thesis, we put the statement, “You must attend this special seminar to break free of that cycle once and for all.” (That’s what I wrote about yesterday: activating the compulsory need in humans to know). Then we describe what they’ll learn in the 90-minute program and conclude with logistical information such as where, when and how to register. Of course, I don’t write this on the fly; I spend time in off-call hours constructing the final language, but we flesh out the basics in this session. I’m happy to provide some key pointers for your promotional copy! I kept this post purposely vague for copyright purposes, but there’s enough direction here for you to apply the general concepts to your own marketing pieces. TOMORROW IS THE DAY!! You can own this entire 8-session consultation! To see the first of two videos introducing the CD, click here now!
October 5, 2010 By
The service entrepreneurs I work with—coaches, healers nutritionists, consultants, therapists–love to perform their services, but they also love to inform: so they speak or give seminars. But often, what they’re speaking about has no “through-line.” I just had coffee with a wonderful new friend last week, who reminded me of this term. A “through-line” is a theater term that means, “the theme that runs through the plot of a film or other dramatic work.” I would say it’s fitting to consider businesses “dramatic work,” and so we want a “theme that runs through the plot of our businesses.” And when we’re giving a seminar or even a single presentation, we want to ensure that it is inside of the through-line, promoting that theme, reinforcing it, growing it. But again, too many presentations and seminars are “isolated incidences” that have no roots to a larger theme. I am one week into my intensive program, 12 Sentences: Ultimate Business Creation and Articulation, and the participants are soon going to be considering their business’s theme, so that everything they do—from the articles they write to the opt-in gifts they offer to their blog content…to the presentations they give— runs through the “spine” (another word for through- line) of their business. Next week, I’m going to be launching my first CD set! SO excited about that! And as you will see in the videos I’ll be releasing about it next Tuesday, one of the many things I did with two financial coaches was help them develop their “teaching concept” for the free seminar they would be giving to attract more clients. By teaching concept, I mean the main premise of that signature program. This teaching concept soon became their “brand concept”—the premise or idea they were putting forth not just in their free signature program, but the premise or idea that supported their business and that they would teach everywhere. This teaching concept would be threaded through the free report, ebook or video training for their opt-in; it would be what they’d teach about in their articles, and emphasize in their blog posts. It would be the subject of radio interviews, local promotions and even a book, should they choose to write one. I began referring to this as their “brand concept.” The teaching concept “theme running through the plot of their business.” It was created as we developed the teaching premise of their signature program, and then bloomed into the brand concept of their entire business. So, how do you know if you have a “brand concept”—or even a teaching concept for your presentations? Well, let’s start at the very beginning. Ask yourself this first, “Does my presentation have a through-line, a theme that runs through the plot of my business, or is it a tactical device, a one-time talk I’m just ‘throwing together,’ with no strategic roots”? Next, “If I were to have a signature program—a free or even paid event that people know me for—what is the single concept I would teach in it?” (We won’t even consider right now if it’s Brain-Sticky or not. Just consider the single idea you would teach.) And from there, ask yourself, “Could I teach this every- where, in all of my marketing pieces, and feel that I was teaching the most salient information out of everything I could teach?” In other words, is this single idea the most important and interesting I could put forth? These are some ideas to get you started. But be sure to register above in Blog Telecalls, for this week’s free call at 1pm Thursday Oct. 7, where we’ll discuss this idea, and I’ll share with you my signature program teaching concepts. And stay tuned for the release of my 8-CD set next week, the first in my Eavesdropping Series: How to Get Clients with a Signature Program that Sells AND Transforms!