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Don’t Assume People Know What You Do

March 10, 2020

blank vertical space, 16 pixels highYou work hard to build a business, a brand, and what happens?

People still have the wrong idea about what you do…blank vertical space, 32 pixels high

Laughing guy thinks dog just pisses on fire hydrants business card shows dog runs home security company Savage K-9, LTD

blank vertical space, 24 pixels highI got the idea for this post after reading What I Learned As A Fall Intern by Winston Heckt. Mr. Heckt interned at Stephen Dupont‘s public relations agency, Pocket Hercules, in Minneapolis.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

This was the passage that jumped out for me:blank vertical space, 24 pixels high

When I was in high school I was told the narrative that construction and truck driving are for people who can’t make it in college, but this couldn’t be farther from the truth. One of the first people I interviewed was Amanda Gardas, a pipefitter and a military veteran who does complex math off the top of her head while working in an environment where one mistake could have potentially deadly consequences.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

It became clear to me that working in these industries requires just as much intelligence, hard work and dedication as it does to get a college degree, and it was fulfilling to know that the work I was doing was focused on changing the false narrative
I was given in high school.blank vertical space, 24 pixels high

blank vertical space, 16 pixels highI found myself wondering how many of us might be victims of a false narrative. Not in any malicious sense. Just the idea that people– prospective clients, in particular– might have the wrong idea of what we do. They might be making certain assumptions, and jumping to wrong conclusions.blank vertical space, 16 pixels highblank vertical space, 16 pixels high

Here’s the scary part: a lot of that might be our own fault. We might be assuming visitors to our site know exactly what we do, and how we work. We might not be giving them enough information because what we do seems obvious to us. We forget others don’t have our inside knowledge.blank vertical space, 16 pixels highblank vertical space, 16 pixels high

I can think of another culprit, too: jargon. And/or buzzwords. We try to make ourselves sound smart by using big words. Or we use acronyms, or inside slang. Result: confusion. And I think many times people simply scroll on. They don’t ask for clarification because they’re afraid it will make them look stupid.blank vertical space, 16 pixels highblank vertical space, 16 pixels high

Bottom line: we need to be clear on what we do, and we need to speak the customer’s language.blank vertical space, 24 pixels high

Why don’t I follow my own advice? OK, I will: I just created a new What I Do page, and added it to my site menu above.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

It includes links to related samples, and a list of What I Don’t Do. Please check it out and let me know what you think!blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

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About Mark: I’m an illustrator specializing in humor, editorial, branding, social media, and content marketing. My images are different, like your brand needs to be.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

You can view my portfolio, and connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

Questions? Send me an email.blank vertical space, 40 pixels highRecommendation testimonial for Mark Armstrong Illustration from Jenny Davis, Managing Editor, The Partner Channel

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. March 10, 2020 11:00 AM

    In your “What I do” page you forgot to add number 13. [and most important one] You make people happy! 🙂

    Like

    • March 11, 2020 7:50 AM

      And now I need to add #14, too: I cry with happiness when I see such beautiful comments!! 😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭🌊🌊🌊🚣🚣🚣🚣🚣🚣🐋💥🚑🐟🐠🐡🐙😊

      Thank you, dear outrageous Marina!!! 😘

      Liked by 1 person

  2. March 17, 2020 2:30 PM

    Absolutely correct. A lot of my closest friends and family don’t know what I do. At least my partner does…I might occasionally vent to him about work. 🙂

    Like

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