The Core Message is the Essence of Building A Strong Platform
In the next 9 months, the world is going to be an entirely different place. People are increasingly more concerned about their own day-to-day activities than ever before. Corporations are pursuing new ways to tap into the attention span of consumers.
Consumer behavior manipulation is rampant on the internet. Children are awake for most of the night unable to turn off the PS4 or XBox. The human attention span is rapidly shrinking.
People’s value systems are changing. The world is in a state of flux. The question is not how to keep up with the changes taking place today. The question is how do you get your core message out in front of your audience tomorrow. And make that core message stick.
A Core Message Must Be Useful & Clear
A major key to a successful platform is making sure the core message is meaningful and clear.
A confused core message will have no impact and will lead to a dwindling audience. A platform can have all the bells and whistles. The newest plugins and the slickest e-mail marketing campaigns will not make a difference. A cloudy core message will fail.
A core message that has no impact is a dwindling value due to the noise of other competing messages. A confusing message does not stand a chance in this hi-tech world of media. As a result, time must be invested in creating a clear and useful core message.
Hunting The Core Message
Finding the core message is very important and must be thought through thoroughly.
One can not overstate how necessary it is to create and mull over the core message. I, personally like to work with a broad stroke. I chip away, slowly, methodically at the broad statement. Until I achieve a concise core message.
A core message is like writing a book.
For an example, an author will write as many words as possible relating to the topic of the book he or she is writing. He or she has written down, say 80,000 words. They will chip away the unuseful, confusing, and overly stated sentences and phrases.
Now, the 80,000 words have been cut down to 50,000 words. Now what remains is a book which will be relevant and clear. The book will serve the purpose of those with the most interest in reading it. The evidence will be in the sharing and purchasing of the book.
Another solution to hunting the core message is to focus on building what is called a position statement. A position statement has 6 pieces of information. Confidently fill in the blanks in the statement. You now have an operating core message for engaging your audience.
Position Statement CheatSheet
For [TARGET] who are [SEGMENT], [BRAND]provides the [CATEGORY] with [DISTINCTION]because of [PROOF]
This is a cheat sheet which you can use to build your core message. Below is a list of definitions. Read the definition and fill in the blank with your personalized answer.
- Target – is a concise group of people you have selected you would like to attract
- Segment – is distinct selection of people inside the target which you have a solution to a problem they may have
- Brand – the packaged core message
- Category – how the customer sees the solution
- Distinction -Your unique perspective and solution to the problem
- Proof – Why you can help solve the problem
7 Questions to test the clarity and usefulness of a core message?
- How does my message relate to what is happening today in the world? Relevance.
- Can my audience connect my message to a place in the future? Journey.
- Have I clearly identified my audience where my message relates to them and them alone? Community.
- Does my audience percieve my message has valueable? Resource.
- Am I providing a message which gets my followers back on track or gives my audience a sense of normalcy? Balance.
- Is my message life-changing or affecting my audience on a daily level? Transformative.
- What about my core message makes my audience reach out to the others and spread the message? Connection.
I personally have found that core messages are actually communicating and resonating with my audience on a deeper level. Metaphorical.
A metaphor is a figure of speech that is used to make a comparison between two things that aren’t alike but do have something in common.
Metaphors are great for transmitting shared beliefs. A core message usually is put together from one or two metaphors. I would suggest you take time out and write down your core message. See which metaphors you are using to communicate your core message. Identify the metaphor. This will make brand construction easier.
Brand construction is how you want your core message to look, sound, and feel. It is reflected in how you package your core message and deliver it to your selected audience who you engage on your platform.
Brands have a life. Branding gives a words images mobility. Brands contain messages. You must understand that your audience is going to pack up and take your brand with them after they read a blog or listen to a podcast. Because of this, you must make sure your brand is transmitting the intended message.
A powerful brand will position itself to be identified by those it engages.
A brand needs to be consistent. Brand is serious. It is an identifier. The first words spoken by someone viewing your blog is what your brand is. Try an experiment. Ask a member of your audience to listen to your podcast. Ask them what they think about what they are listening to?
The first words out of that person’s mouth represent your brand. Buy into the fact that brands repel and attract. The attraction of your brand induces action. It produces the re-tweet or’like’ on Facebook.
Your brand is the tool that reaches out and invites newcomers to visit your platform. A platform stretches out from your immediate audience and touches their followers, like an extended family. Leave no rock unturned. Branding is important. Think about it deeply.
Build A Website
Don’t make building a website a chore. Wasting time trying to figure out which blog platform to use is a no-no. Simply get one.
Daunting as it sounds, building a website is not nearly as difficult as it used to be. Building a WordPress blog is easy. It can be done in 20 minutes. Next step is simply selecting a theme which matches your core message and brand. Almost finished. You will find it is just like painting a house. You’ll need to select colors and wallpaper. Begin blogging.
How often is often? I think it depends on your ability to write quality content. You will have to find out the appetite of your audience. You will regularly supply them with quality content. Finally, create a habit of publishing quality content.
If they are not returning you need to sharpen your pen. Ask a friend for their opinion on your blog or podcast. If your audience returns you have succeeded. The proof is in the pudding.
Work The Network
Don’t make the mistake of thinking you are starting from scratch. You’ll feel overwhelmed.
Realize you have an immediate audience at your disposal, a resource to invite and engage on your platform. Your friends will be much easier to get feedback on your blog with little at risk. Therefore, family and friends are the first to invite on your online platform. You have colleagues and peers invite them.
You should invite people from your social media accounts to engage with you on your platform. If you are providing quality content and have your social media accounts setup properly the news of your platform will spread through blog comments.
Do guest blogging. This is a great way to share information. An advantage of guest blogging is you will pick up more ideas to write about. You will find competing perspectives to enhance your point of view giving you more to write about on your platform.
Use Social Media
Social media is a powerful tool enabling you the ability to engage as many people as your creative imagination will allow.
Think of creative ways to reach your core audience. Write down ideas to engage people who may need to hear your message. Define who they are? Study to find patterns has to how your audience uses social media to obtain information?
Doing these things will allow you to create a strong platform.
You will be able to create a core message and take it to the world. Those gravitating to the core message will look for you to add more value. They will share and engage on your platform. Your job is simply to engage and interact with your audience. Share valuable content and remain consistent with your core message.