Nicholas Peddle: What I Learned at the New Orleans Chamber's "Messaging Strategy" Workshop
2/7/2018 7:46:20 AM

On Monday morning, January 29, I attended a marketing workshop hosted by the New Orleans Chamber of Commerce. John Deveney of New Orleans-based public relations firm DEVENEY gave an engaging presentation entitled "Compel & Persuade.” Mr. Deveney used original research to discuss how best to persuade corporate decision-makers.

Mr. Deveney led a research study that sought to understand how best to reach to C-level decision-makers. Specifically, he wanted to answer, "How can your messaging strategy be most compelling?” He surveyed CEOs and other executives across a variety of industries, asking them to evaluate what type of messaging most resonated with them.

The study consisted of sample messaging from a nonprofit asking for corporate support. Mr. Deveney and his team asked the executives to evaluate the various requests for support and to share his/her reactions with the fellow participants. Through a private online discussion board, Mr. Deveney gained insight into the participants’ reactions to the messaging and from their discussion with one another.

While this test was done using messaging that asked for contributions to a nonprofit, Mr. Deveney explained that the strategy and components he found to be most effective are relevant when asking for money as well as selling goods and services.

Messaging Strategy – How to communicate
Based on the results of his research, Mr. Deveney concluded that an effective messaging strategy—the approach to take—contains the following qualities:

  • Business-focused. Be clear about why you are communicating and make the business case for what you are offering.
  • Emotional. Make a connection between your organization and the one you’re communicating with; humanize the message.
  • Rational. Make a clear argument as to why your product or service is a good fit for the potential customer.
  • Focused. Keep your message simple and consistent.

Messaging Components – What to communicate
Mr. Deveney recommended including the following components in communication with decision-makers:

  • Facts and figures. Including anticipated growth and return on investment.
  • Specific details. What will it look like to work together? This can include deliverables, timelines, and other details.
  • Evidence. Use past examples of projects you’ve completed, problems you’ve solved, your expertise, and other evidence to communicate your ability.

This workshop gave me a lot to think about as I consider how to best craft LCI and LCIA’s messaging. Thank you to the New Orleans Chamber and to Mr. Deveney for offering classes like this for Louisiana businesses.

"What I Learned at..." is a series in LCIA's Orange Blog where we provide a recap of learning opportunities that LCI and LCIA staff take advantage of. Whether it is an LCIA workshop, professional development class, or other educational event, we use the "What I Learned at..." blog series to report what we learned to you.

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