3 Rules to Follow to Captivate Your Audience

By Guest Writer

by BioBm Consulting

Captivating your audience should be priority #1 for high-level marketing communications. Before you get into the details of what you want to say, you need to make sure you have the audience’s attention, can maintain it for as long as possible, and that they’re in a mind-frame that’s most conducive to a positive outcome.

Rule #1: Focus on your why

The most common type of introductory statement made is a “what” statement. Companies explain what they, their brands, or their product lines do, and then get into how they do these things. That can make for a very drab introduction. Instead of initially focusing on what you do, focus on why you’re doing it. (You can find some examples of “what” statements and “why” statements pertaining to brand messaging in a previous BioBm Consulting post here.) It’s far easier for people to psychologically buy into a reason than it is for them to buy into a thing, and it starts your conversations off on the right foot.

Rule #2: Frame the why

Frame your reason – your “why” – as a statement the audience can agree with. You will be building upon a positive note, which will make them more receptive to subsequent messages. How do you find your why statement? Look at your target market, and identify the goals and values of your company that are aligned with theirs. Use that information and add, tweak, or create the entire message off of that information. Remember however, that the point is not to take your audience’s values and simply make that your message. This tactic works most powerfully when your brand and your audience share these viewpoints.

Rule #3: Find your emotion

Powerful messages always draw sincere emotion from an audience. This can be a difficult task, and one that requires considerable creative talent. It’s more of an art than a science, but understanding the underlying motivations of your target audience is an important starting point. You need to frame the message around something that they care about.

Ion_Community_Captivate_Audience_Example

One example from the sciences is via Ion Torrent, displayed in a Boston metro station, reading “Everyone Deserves a Chance to Break Through.” This meets the three criteria explained above. It is a “why” statement: it tells you Ion Torrent is trying to provide people with the opportunity to make scientific breakthroughs. It prompts agreement: if you agree that everyone does deserve that chance (a fair assumption on Ion’s part) then you can get behind the idea. Lastly, it is emotionally powerful. It might invoke slightly different things for different people, but the underlying idea is one of scientific success – the empowerment to make groundbreaking scientific discoveries.

By creating a compelling “why” statement, making it something the audience can agree with, and giving it emotion, you’ll be able to heighten your audience’s receptiveness to your messages, increase their effective attention span, and begin to create brand value from step one. Use these statements as centerpieces of your high-level marketing communications and watch your marketing effectiveness improve.

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