The first meetings are almost always the same. After the polite introductions and small talk I simply ask, “Tell me, what do you do?”
The answer starts out with gusto because all my clients are passionate about the work they do. Before long, we are drowning in a sea of information. This is understandable. In an attempt to simplify all that they do AND include all that they do, their energy overtakes their message. As they share stories, metaphors, tangents, uniqueness, facts, opinions, visions and hopes, they get tangled and confused. They begin to lose track of the question they were answering.
They look for signs that I’m following, but see an expressionless face that’s not giving them any feedback. I’m not reacting because I’m listening intently and taking it all in. They wind down their explanation with a grimace and hopeful eyes.
This introduction to their work has taken anywhere from fifteen minutes to three hours. Yes. The current record is three hours. By the end, the speaker is more confused, maybe even discouraged. But, I’m overjoyed. Finally, some feedback. I spring back to life and tell them that they’re in the perfect spot!
The raw material is there. They just need an outside perspective from a process expert to take the ideas, stories, experience, uniqueness, hopes, visions, facts and opinions and distill them into a simple brand essence -- a sentence that will powerfully summarize what their brand is.
You need someone who can help you see who you are.