What do you want the reader to do after they finish?
Write down your answer. Really. Keep it under a dozen words.
Do that and you’ll write more effectively and faster.
For the details, check out the video with the guy in the jacket.
I know what it is: you ask about the topic.
That’s the wrong question – seriously.
The right question?
THIS ONE: What do you want the audience to do when this is over?
For details, check the video!
Internal comms? External comms? There's no difference.
Instead ask only this: what will it take to get this person to take the action I have in mind?
We are motivated most by the basics: what we like, love, hate, need, desire, fear – common needs of all humans, not the particulars of our day.
Keep your eyes on what makes us human, not what defines our jobs. That stuff is secondary.
Always has been. Always will be.
A former student recently asked me to recommend organizations to distribute a press release to outlets specific to an industry. I suggested the usual suspects, but I also said this: Ask yourself what you wish to achieve by sending the release in the first place.
Mass distribution is a blunt instrument compared to calling reporters personally and, over time, developing relationships. I urge you to ask not just "who should receive the release" but also "what is it we want to happen at the end of the day?"
A press release is a tactic, not an end, and you will probably get better results by focusing directly on the goal. Though it is a common and obvious tool for promotion, it is rarely the most effective one.
Don’t seek coverage without considering why you want the coverage in the first place. Once you have the real goal in mind, consider the best tools to pursue it. The press release will likely be among those tools, but it won’t be the only one, and it will rarely be the...
When you write something--a speech, letter, email--think about what you want the reader to do in response. Write that one thing down in a sentence. Doing this focuses your work. Work from the goal. Work backwards.
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Lately I'm seeing employee-engagement emails that use surveys. A quick read reveals that almost all are busywork -- a way to remind you they're at their desk and still your boss.
Your employees (and customers and vendors and anyone else you send surveys to) resent busywork. Don't send a survey unless you're going to read the replies and share the results. There are better ways to announce your presence.