Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Churnalism | Search

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Monday, April 11, 2011

Marketing Through Storytelling

Info-Entrepreneur Tip of the Month
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Marketing Through Storytelling

April 2011

I just got back from the annual conference of the Association of Independent Information Professionals. I had a number of conversations with people who were in their first year of their business, and weren't sure how to describe themselves. I suggested that they try the 10-Vignettes Exercise, something that takes no more than an hour or two to complete and that brings insight into how you talk about your business. Here's how it works...

Your job is to write 10 stories, each of no more than three sentences and 100 words. Each story will describe a situation a client is in, what the client got from you at the end, and how the client benefited. You don't discuss how you gathered the information, what sources you used, or even what kind of research you conducted. The truth is that your clients doesn't care what you do or how you do it. They just care about how you resolve their problem. And the stories can be anonymized or otherwise written to protect confidentiality. Here's what a vignette might look like.

[describe your client's situation] My client was considering moving into the organic personal care market.
[describe what your client gets from you] I provided my client with an overview of the market, with the key issues highlighted.
[describe what the client does as a result of your work] My client decided to focus on organic and natural baby care products, realizing that this was the area in which they had a clear advantage.

The virtue of this exercise is that it takes the focus away from you and your services, and turns the attention to where it belongs - on what your client values. A additional benefit is that you can put these vignettes up on your web site; they are a far more effective way to highlight your value than just listing your services. Try writing up 10 stories about the kind of work you do and see if you have a better idea of how to talk about yourself with clients.



Back issues of this newsletter are available at BatesInfo.com/ie-tips

The second edition of Building and Running a Successful Research Business: a guide for the independent information professional is here! Buy it directly from my fabulous store and receive a free half-hour of coaching. See www.BatesInfo.com/book for more information about the book.
I offer strategic business coaching services to both new and long-time info-entrepreneurs. If you would like to see more information about coaching, go to www.BatesInfo.com/coaching or email me for my coaching FAQ. Contact me at:
Mary Ellen Bates
Bates Information Services Inc.
+1 303.772.7095
mbates@BatesInfo.com
www.BatesInfo.com
LinkedIn: maryellenbates
Twitter: mebs
Facebook: Mary Ellen Bates

Here are 10 Tips from BuzzFeed to Make Your Content Go Viral | Both Sides of the Table

Here are 10 Tips from BuzzFeed to Make Your Content Go Viral | Both Sides of the Table: "Here are 10 Tips from BuzzFeed to Make Your Content Go Viral

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Tuesday, April 5, 2011