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Defining Your Message

Submitted by on November 4, 2010 – 4:21 pm3 Comments

Spend time focusing your message and defining your story when preparing for an interview. What is it you really want to say? What is it people care about? What makes your message newsworthy?

I learned a great messaging technique I want to pass onto you: to help you decide your three main message points to communicate, write the headline and the first paragraph of what you’d like to read in a newspaper about you, your company or product. This will help you focus and hone your message. Your message should answer the basic questions of who, what, where and when and each point should be short: 8 words or less. You should be able to communicate your three main message points in the first 30 seconds of the interview or the first paragraph of a newspaper. If you cannot do this, your message is not clear and simple or you have too many points.

When defining your message, think about the relevant issues at hand, questions the audience will be asking, stories or illustrations you can use to keep the interview interesting, differing opinions on the topic, and the final emotion you want to leave the audience with.

             This advice is not only practical for doing interviews, but also for defining and communicating your brands’ message in general.

  • Julie,

    Would you say this is the same technique to use when writing a press release? By that I mean, for the title and subtitle of your press release?


  • Julie Spiewak

    Is the release for the press or for general online readers?

    As a rule of thumb, the headline should always provide important information to the reader and get their attention quickly. It should be newsworthy and tied into that day’s headlines, current events, etc. It should not be a marketing pitch or advertisement.

    Hope this helps!

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