Promise Statement

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Many companies have brand statements that are ineffective. This video introduces what a Promise Statement is and how to create one.


Transcript

Hi, everybody.

My name is Andrew Schiestel and today’s conversation is about how to create an effective brand statement for your company.

A brand statement on a website is better than no statement at all. However, a Promise Statement is better than a brand statement on average. So, if a promise statement is better than the average brand statement, let’s talk about what a promise statement is. There’s five key features to a promise statement. They are: the statement is eight words or less; it’s client-centric; it’s benefits-oriented; it uses assertive words, not passive; it doesn’t have the company’s name in the statement. Those are the five. So, let’s unpack each of these with a bit more detail.

It’s important that the statement is eight words or less for a couple main reasons. One is it can fit better in different pieces of your collateral. So, it could be above the fold, an overlay on a hero banner image or near your logo. It could go on a business card in a sales deck, a sales brochure, etcetera. The shorter it is, the more recall that it’s going to have as well. People can remember things easier if things are shorter, right? Those are some of the reasons why it’s important to keep the statement eight words or less.

Make the statement client-centric. There’s so many brand statements out there that companies make the statement about themselves. Don’t do that. Make the statement about the client or the prospect. Shift the language towards your reader. It’s very important. That’s what they care about.

Make the statement benefits-oriented. A way to do this is think about the outcome that clients obtain by working with your company. That will help inform creating your statement to be benefits-oriented.

Use assertive, not passive, words in the statement. So, as a random, hypothetical example, if you’re a bookkeeping company and the promise statement is “Taking control of your bookkeeping,” the word “taking” is a passive word. Replace it with “take” so that the statement then becomes “Take control of your bookkeeping.” It’s a more assertive term, as a statement. And don’t use your company’s name in the statement. There’s a big tech company that I was on their website the other day, and they have this new statement above their fold, and it’s talking about how customers can basically have more creative effectiveness. And then they end the statement with the term “with” and then their company name. So, it’s like, “More creative effectiveness…” I’m paraphrasing. “More creative effectiveness with…” and then the company name. That’s implied, that that company can help fulfill on the statement, so don’t put your company’s name in the statement. People understand that part. And there’s also an attractiveness, or it could be entertaining for people to not have all the dots connected for them. You don’t want puzzles that can’t be solved. People typically don’t want that. But we also don’t want all of the dots connected. Guide people a little bit and then let them connect those last few dots. So, don’t put your company’s name in the statement itself.

There’s a very popular WordPress plugin called Yoast, that when installed on a WordPress website it lets a user who is using the content management system to better optimize a subpage for search engine optimization – so, some extra features to help within the page to help it rank better on organic search. Yoast’s promise statement is: “SEO for everyone.” When you think about it, it’s a brilliant statement. It’s three words, so it’s eight words or less. It’s client-centric. The term “everyone,” you’d put their clients within that. It’s benefits-oriented because they’ve said the term “SEO.” That’s what certain people want out there who are in the web industry, certainly their customers. It uses assertive words, not passive – “SEO for everyone.” They’re not saying, “SEO-ing for everyone,” or “SEO for everyone one day.” And it doesn’t have their company’s name in the statement.

There’s a company I’m a shareholder of – AODA Online. It’s a software that developers use to build websites that are accessible for people with physical disabilities. The promise statement for AODA Online is: “Make your website accessible.” It’s a good statement when you think about it, right? Because it’s four words, so it’s eight words or less. It’s client-centric. It’s “Make your website accessible,” so it’s speaking to the reader. It’s benefits-oriented. The company is on the website. They probably have a site that they wish to have become accessible. That’s what the statement says: “Make your website accessible.” It’s assertive words in the statement, not passive. So, it’s not talking about “Making your website accessible” or “Make your website accessible one day.” “Make your website accessible.” It’s succinct. It’s assertive. And it doesn’t have the company’s name in the statement itself.

So, again, to summarize the five features, a Promise Statement is eight words or less; it’s client-centric; it’s benefits-oriented; it uses assertive words, not passive words; and it doesn’t have the company’s name in the statement. My hope was that today’s conversation was useful, that it makes you think about this concept called a promise statement and gives you some tools to create one for your company. I want to see your company grow and I want to see you earn more income in the future. If you have any questions or comments, please leave them in the comment section below. I always love to hear from you and I look forward to connecting with you soon again.

Take care.

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