Communication in The Age of Disruption
THERE IS A MOMENT OF TRUTH
Every business, every consultant, every brand ambassador faces it. You are sitting down with a potential client and you have to find out if there’s a fit. The prospect is thinking along these lines: "Should we hire you? Or would one of your competitors do a better job?" Once the moment of truth arrives, most of your work should already be done. Before you ever get to the meeting, your business, your brand must be positioned precisely in your marketplace – and in the mind of the prospect.
“Victorious warriors win first and then go to war, while defeated warriors go to war first and then seek to win” Sun Tzu, The Art of War
Everyone wants competitive advantage. But not everyone realizes that competitive advantage is the result of being vastly different than the competition. It is the tough task of making a series of tough decisions. To create competitive differentiation you actually have to BE different. Work differently. Define your audience differently. Communicate differently.
image credit: flickr.com
You have to want to go somewhere new. It takes practice, It takes courage.
The unknown is really unknown. It is mysterious, yet pragmatic. The truth lies in the depth of the communication, in the quality of our attention. "Listen for something that is subtle and soft, that echo of the beyond, of what is more deeply true or insightful behind someone’s words." Listen to the quality of the space between words. The field of consciousness between us is affected by how fully we engage with it.
WHERE DO YOU FIT IN THIS WORLD? DECIDE WHAT YOU STAND FOR.
Telling your clients who you are is the most important thing your brand can do. Why you do what you do?
And it’s got to be demonstrably different than your competitors.
When Steve Jobs came back to Apple, he said, “The way to connect with customers is not to talk about ‘speeds and feeds,’ our customers want to know: Who is Apple? What is it that we stand for? Where do we fit in this world?”
Jobs believed: “People with passion CAN change the world for the better. That’s what we believe.” This belief became Apple’s Central Organizing Principle, the philosophy that drives everything Apple says and does.
GO WHERE THE LOVE IS
Fearlessly demonstrate to your ideal clients that there are no substitutes for the value you provide. To do so, you need to know who loves you and why? There will be brand buyers and there will be brand ambassadors and yes, there will those skeptics as well. Fearlessly, subdue them with functional solutions. But, be sure to serve it on an emotional platter. Use demographic and psychographic profile to secure success for your sales and your marketing. Nurture a stimulating interaction. Excel at winning with ease!
THE ELUSIVE BLUE BOX ROE IS THE RADICAL GAME CHANGER
Why Tiffany is so special? Is it the turquoise blue box that makes you feel more loved? Or is it a manifestation of the emotional essence of the brand? A brand that fearlessly preaches: I love you (more). The entire Tiffany experience provides giver and receiver the "gift of feeling more love." That’s the irreplaceable value of the brand.
All businesses have to sell "stuff". And, Tiffany is no different.
But, very few businesses have managed to make a commodity into a sentimental life long keep-sake.
Once you understand this business of creating deeply meaningful experiences, your business breaks all records and soars to new heights.
Use entertainment as a layer in driving brand value. Do not put it just for the sake of it. It won’t create a lasting impression on the consumer. When entertainment co-mingles with experience, the consumer naturally gravitate towards it. And, the brand that brings him into intimate contact with; rules their hearts and their minds
THE EDGE. THAT IS WHERE THE VIEW IS.
We live in two worlds. The inner and the outer.
And the edge is the where fusion happens...the field of pure potentiality. Novalis was referring to this field when he said, '"The seat of the soul is there where the inner and outer worlds meet.”
"The inner world is the world of your requirements and your energies and your structure and your possibilities that meets the outer world. And the outer world is the field of your incarnation. That’s where you are. You’ve got to keep both going." Joseph Cambell
This is true for carbon-based humans; and equally true for concept-based brands. After all, the underlying basis of brand equity is consumer memory.
Communication is both verbal and non-verbal. We all have depths that we rarely allow to the surface. And, we all have the ability to access the Unknown and to speak from there in most unexpected ways. "Being more interested in where the inquiry is going and the quality of the field we are generating together takes us beyond the known. This is what allows us to access a wisdom and intelligence we had no idea we were capable of..."
The kingdom of pure magic.
We are living in very disruptive times. We are on a mission. We are called upon to disrupt ourselves. Wou want to change the world. We want to upset the status-quo. As, Guy Kawasaki puts it so eloquently: This takes more than run-of-the-mill relationships. You need to make people dream the same dream that you do.
To do it, you have to be fearlessly attentive and daringly receptive. How else, will you stare in the eye of tornado and not be swept by it.