What if I told you that by the end of this article, I would give you the single most important piece of information for your small business? If nothing else, I’d say between the overly dramatic title of this article and that opening sentence, I at least have your attention, don’t I? And that, my friends, is what we’re talking about today … the branding of your business and how to convey it to your audience with a sense of URGENCY.
I hosted a morning radio show for 20 years, and it was widely understood that you had approximately seven seconds to capture the audience’s attention before they changed the channel. Seven seconds! So if you thought it was a good idea to start your segment with, “Hi .. good morning … my name is Zack … this is my co-host … how are you today?” BUZZER! Wrong answer! They’re gone. They’re bored and moved on.
But if I started out by saying, “I’m going to tell you about a slice of pizza I ate last night that was so delicious it changed my life,” well now you wanna hear about this magical triangle of destiny and you’re going to hang with me until the end of the story. (Unless you’re some kind of monster that doesn’t want to hear about a life-changing pizza, in which case I don’t want you as my audience anyway.)
I help out once a month at a get-together for small business owners in Roanoke (it’s free and fun, email me if interested), and recently we were talking about the “elevator pitches” of our company. After hearing “Hi my name is blah blah and I own a company called blah blah,” a few times I knew it was time to talk about how we promote our brand and the sense of urgency necessary to capture our audience.
When we try to reach our audience, we are in a constant battle for their attention between competitors in our field and pretty much any other distraction … Netflix, Candy Crush, annoying TikTok videos, or whatever else. So it is absolutely VITAL to get our message across as quickly and efficiently as possible.
The good news is, once you have their attention, then you can take the time to explain your brand or your services and show them why you’re so dang awesome. But if you waste that first seven seconds? BUZZER! Wrong answer! They’re gone.
OK … now that we’re at the end, this article may not ACTUALLY have saved your life, but I do think this piece of advice is crucial for the success of your business, so it’s definitely saving SOMETHING!