July 18, 2012
Out of This World
bet you can identify with the following inquiry that I received from Wendy P.,
Marketing Director of one of the world’s largest educational publishers. Wendy
wrote, "We position our products as solutions to solving various pain points,
but the term 'solution' just seems so over used in the industry. Can you share
some insights or suggestions for how we can imply the same thing without using
the word 'solution'’?"
Play the Metaphor Game
In a very noisy world, it is, indeed,
hard to grab and maintain attention when you sound like everyone else. Here is a
5 step process to use to discover vivid metaphorical alternatives to get you
heard above the din:
very clear about the concept you wish to convey.
at equivalents of that concept or dynamic in several other
domains or worlds.
Select from those worlds your fresh expression for the original
sure the chosen expression is appropriate to your audience
run that new expression as a theme throughout your product
mean “solution” as a “positive outcome to a challenge or
other worlds where the challenge-outcome dynamic plays itself
Transportation: Happy Landings, Soft Landings,
of chance: Catching the Gold Ring
Fantasy: Making Dreams Come True
Baking: Putting Icing on a Cake
Nature: Growing Healthy Plants & Crops
Sports: Winning the Gold Medal
choose Nature: the concept of Growing Healthy Plants & Crops
lends itself to many applications and it is certainly
appropriate in tone and association.
Immediate ideas to be refined: “Grow young minds with XYZ.” “Our
products nurture the best in children.” “Develop Redwood Tree
Thinking Skills.” Feature A can “provide the soil for the
learning to take root.” Feature B can “water their thinking to
advance their abilities.” Etc.
You can see that
whatever Wendy chooses, it is going to be much more engaging than "solutions."
Stand Out in a Very Noisy World
As of this writing, Wendy has not made her decision. But that needn’t matter to
you. Look at the tired concepts in your presentations. Sit down with your
colleagues, play The Metaphor Game, and give those clichés a make-over to get
your products, services, and ideas noticed and remembered by your clients.
Make what you say pay — with metaphors.
YOU ARE HEARING IT HERE FIRST & I NEED YOUR
I am re-issuing my book Metaphorically Selling
in the next two months, which is now very low in stock. The expanded book will
be called, The Tall Lady With the Iceberg: the power of metaphors to
sell, persuade, & explain anything to anyone and will include the
original book plus 23+ Metaphor Minute-type anecdotes.
As the world becomes a noisier and noisier place in which to sell products,
services, or ideas, the need for visual communication becomes increasingly
critical to success, so I am very excited to be doing this.
Will you do me a favor? I
am ashamed to admit it, but I do not have the best handle on what all of you
loyal readers do.
drop me an email with just your job title and country in the subject box?
That will help me enormously in targeting future announcements about the book.
Need Help With Your Presentation?
Call today and turn your information that tells into a story
Personal Presentation Client:
"I sing your praises every
opportunity I get. I look forward to continuing our work together"
Jane Newton, Wealth Manager, Regent Atlantic Capital LLC