A Short Guide To Using The Force Like A Motivational Speaker

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So I went to a motivational speaker thing-y a little while ago and I really hated it.

First of all, I want to make it clear that I don’t think there was anything wrong with the speaker or what he was saying. But after about fifteen minutes, I felt like I was stuck in a room full of despairing souls having their brains happily tenderized by a mallet of charisma. Now, that’s not necessarily what was going on. There were probably plenty of folks in that audience having a perfectly good time, experiencing perfectly legit ‘ah hah’ moments. People weren’t being abused or manipulated.

But I realized later on that I was reacting strongly to the experience because I grew up attending churches like this. So I feel defensive—a just a tad bit cynical—when I find myself in crowds of people being whipped up by an admired leader-figure.

Anyway, in order to deal with my discomfort, I went into full-on analytical mode. I started taking down notes about the techniques this speaker had incorporated (consciously or instinctively) into his oratorical approach. I figured I might as well generate a ‘how to be a motivational speaker’ list while I was writhing inwardly in my business casual attire.

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February 20, 2015

Market Research Interviews That Make You Better, Faster, Stronger…And Nicer

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The voice on the other end of the line was emotional yet authoritative. ‘You want to know why I hire her? She is an honestly a good person. And those are few and far in between.’

‘Wow,’ I said. ‘Fair enough.’

If you want to fall more deeply in love with your client, there is one failsafe method I’ve found: interview her clients. And believe me, it will serve you to fall more deeply in love with your client, no matter what kind of work you do.

Personally, as a writer of various marketing communications, I conduct this kind of interview when I need to understand the emotional core of my client’s services or products. Which, by the way, is ‘always’, no matter how straightforward and prosaic the service of product appears to be. (The same crazy fireworks-display emotion-driven regions of the brain will help us to decide both which toothbrush to buy and which mate to marry.) By interviewing people about their feelings, ideas, and experiences, I can start to crack the code of what ‘solution’ my client’s services or products represent. Personally, I prefer over-the-phone or in-person interviews over any other method of research, because the voice itself is a rich source of information, conveying meaning in a way that written answers or a survey results cannot.

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January 16, 2015

How To Put An Actual Human Soul Into Your LinkedIn Summary

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I have an idea for a killer new app. I’m thinking of calling it ‘Impressivizer’. You load it up with all your favourite industry buzzwords and it spits out a LinkedIn summary that you can simply copy and paste to your profile. Everyone is going to use this thing! I mean, imagine: Impressivizer will shave tens of minutes from everybody’s busy schedules, tens of minutes that were previously devoted to creating LinkedIn profiles. An inhuman generator to do the work of millions of sleepy, unfocused professionals fitting in tasks in between answering emails and checking Facebook.

The Average LinkedIn Summary Is A Massive Wasted Opportunity 

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December 10, 2014

Ghostwrite the Person Your Client Aspires To Be

Ghostwrite the Person Your Client Aspires To Be

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August 28, 2014

One Page Guide: The 4 Links of Marketing that Matters

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I just published a one-page guide on Scribd called ‘The 4 Links of Marketing that Matters’.

This is an ultra-simple guide for arranging the four types of information found in marketing that addresses a customer’s needs and compels action. The four-link chain is a simple mnemonic device that guides marketers in constructing stories about what happens when a customer purchases a service or product from a credible service-provider or vendor. I created this device to aid my own copywriting work and recently shared it with a group of entrepreneurs during a presentation on marketing. This is an original learning tool created by Salvo Communications. Enjoy, my high-EQ marketing communicators!

[Author: Kristin van Vloten]

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June 20, 2014