How to Sell Proactive Messaging Work to the Upstairs

Having a hard time selling your boss on a proactive messaging effort?

First, find out what the objection is to spending time on determining your company story or corporate language. You won’t be able to counter or address objections if you don’t know what they are.

“Lack of time” is the objection we hear the most. But, we also often hear that the executive suite doesn’t always see the need. They don’t see the correlation between profitability and messages, between success and the corporate story, between the bottom line and how they are describing themselves.

Connecting corporate challenges to better messaging is needed.

Below is a list of challenges you may be experiencing in your company. Attached are

proactive steps you can take to show how better messaging might help remove (or at least abate) some of the obstacles you are experiencing.

  • Increasing competition. If your company is experiencing competitive pressure, consider doing a competitive message analysis to see how your company messages stack up against the competition. If you find your customer base is responding more readily to competitors over you, it’s time to address the effectiveness and power of your customer-facing corporate language.
  • Falling value proposition(s). Customer feedback may tell you that your products or services aren’t as relevant as they used to be. Consider surveying your customers asking them what is keeping them up at night. Your language should be addressing some of those concerns. If they aren’t, your messages need revising.
  • Lack of clarity around your mission. If you can’t succinctly tell your customers what you deliver and why, then you can bet your staff is delivering confusing messaging. Assess your employees’ perceptions. Ask them for their version of the company elevator pitch. Now, compare notes. If you get back 12 different answers, you are sending confusing signals to the marketplace. It’s time to get everyone on the same page with a proactive internal messaging effort.
  • General Invisibility. Has the phone stopped ringing? Did you take a break from advertising, public relations, marketing or other customer-communication action? If you haven’t changed the level of communication to customers, you need to see why your message isn’t getting through. A competitive message analysis coupled with customer check-in is needed. Also, a reality check on your service is key.

  • Negative customer feedback. Naturally you should first handle any customer experience that was negative. Make sure processes are in place to ensure better customer interaction, service delivery and other processes. But, do not fail to publicize what you are doing to help make customer’s experiences better. A customer survey after improvements have been installed should tell you if they heard you or not. If you get negative feedback then either the issue wasn’t resolved or your messaging around your offering isn’t feeling real to them.
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