The “Secret” of Effective Messaging

By Eric Seidel, CEO
The Media Trainers

Clarity and consistency. Really no secret at all. But it does take preparation. And discipline.

While using marketing statements (slogans) in news interviews is counter-productive and ill-advised, approaching interviews from a marketing posture does make sense.

Marketers and ad agencies understand that messages take time to get through. It requires repetition and a consistent, clear message. Getting through in news interviews is much like advertising: it’s a cumulative process. Of course, the messaging needs to persuasive for target audiences.

Office Depot CEO Steve Odland has been quite clear, and consistent, regarding the economy through the prism of his business. He doesn’t see daylight yet in the current recession. His metric is his average customer, typically the small business person, and availability of credit enabling expansion (hiring). In a recent Fox News Sunday interview, Odland was asked if he sees a turnaround. He said his customer has suffered disproportionately because credit dried up and still is not sufficient. (Click on the video below.)

The stimulus was supposed to open up credit streams. Fox News Sunday anchor Chris Wallace asked Odland if that was working yet. Nope, he replied. Small businesses still are not finding credit easier to obtain, typically through second mortgages on their homes. (Click on the video below.)

The consistent elements in Odland’s message: the need for credit, which has not yet reappeared, and its importance to sustaining small businesses which, in turn, can begin hiring more workers. That, Odland says, is where all recoveries begin.

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