With all of the information and content available to us each and every second of our lives, it has never been more difficult to break through the noise and get attention. These days, any message you send competes with emails, text messages, news and social media updates, and countless other distractions.
In order to rise to the top, all you have to do is remember this acronym: V.C.C.C.C.:
First, ask yourself if your message actually delivers a value. Will it actually improve the lives of those who receive it? Whether you are writing an internal memo or developing an international marketing campaign, if the intended recipient will not get value from your message, consider how to express your message so that they will -- or consider not sending it altogether.
Bad: Our online marketing campaign needs work. I need to meet with you Friday at 3PM to discuss.
Better: We have a great opportunity to improve our quarterly results by making a few small tweaks to our online marketing campaign. I'd like to discuss this with you on Friday at 3PM.
In any professional correspondence, there is no time for "beating around the bush" or passive aggressive undertones. Just get to the point and be clear about what exactly you want done.
Bad: I think improvements can be made in the sales and marketing department, as we seem to be missing our monthly numbers.
Better: We need a better online marketing strategy, and I believe it can be accomplished if we move resources from print campaigns to a targeted online marketing strategy.
Who has time to read lengthy messages these days, with countless notifications and status updates? For this reason, avoid lengthy emails and just get to your point.
Bad: It is my understanding that you have an upcoming business trip next week, and your schedule is tight, but I would really like to discuss the general strategy proposal for the upcoming quarter. Would you have time in the coming week before you depart to meet and talk? Let me know days and time that work for you.
Better: Are you available this Friday, January 22, at 11a.m. or 3 p.m. to discuss a new online marketing campaign before you leave for your business trip.
Your message also needs to provide a compelling reason to read and act. Creating urgency and a sense of importance will help get your message -- and action -- acted on quickly.
Bad: We need to fix the problem in sales because it is coming down on me to meet projections.
Better: If we can develop an online marketing campaign that will resonate with our customers, we stand a very good chance of meeting this year's projections by the third quarter.
Facts will always influence more than opinions. To be credible, you do not necessarily need to be in a position of authority. You only need to be able to sell the authority you do have.
Bad: I believe that the sales department is the problem and the reason why we struggle to meet our sales projections.
Better: I have reviewed the latest sales report, and it seems to indicate that if we can increase conversion by just 10 percent, we can meet our annual projections by the third quarter. I think our proposed online marketing campaign can accomplish this with only a five percent increase in our online advertising budget.
If you want to get your message heard, recognized and (most important) acted on, then all you need to do is rise above the noise by delivering messages that are clear, concise, compelling, credible, and ultimately deliver a value to its recipient.