There were times in my life when I believed there could be potential power gained by being invisible. I could have come and gone without asking my parents’ permission. I could have seen any number of movies without paying the price of admission. No one would have known whether I sat through the whole chemistry lecture or not. I was pretty sure it would be cool to be unseen.
Of course I am now all grown up and am very clear that invisibility is not the way to go. I now know that being visible is what gives me power. In fact, the more visible I am, the more I can change my life and the situations in which I find myself. I can tell my story, sing my song, make my point clear…I can make myself as visible as I have to in order to be heard.
How are you seen? How do people know where you are? What you sell? What you have to offer?
Don’t be invisible…it’s not all it’s cracked up to be.
When I hear those words sung, I am immediately transported back in time. I am young… and in love for the first time. There seems to be no possible way to express the feeling I’m experiencing. I want to shout it to the mountaintops, but I can’t find the words. So I paint a picture, or sing a song, or make a sculpture in hopes that someone will be able to translate my meaning and understand the depth of emotion there.
There are many ways to say “I love you.” There are many ways to demonstrate “I’m sorry.” There is no end to the number of ways we communicate our joys and our pains.
If the people who need to know aren’t able to hear or understand…try another way of getting the word out.
Your statistics are impressive. Your pie charts and diagrams are stunning. Your slide presentation is quite pretty.
But it is your story that I take home with me. How did what you offer to the market work for one of your clients? How was their level of comfort elevated? How was their ability to accomplish their tasks made simpler? Tell me that story.
Numbers are important, but they are not the whole story. In fact, they aren’t the story at all.
The banquet is prepared, the centerpieces are beautifully displayed, the doors are open, the entertainment is warming up…yet no guests have arrived.
It seems that the menu was chosen, the program was planned, and the hall was made ready. But someone forgot to put out the word: “We’re having a party!”
Sometimes we get caught up in all the behind the scenes work that needs to be done. We have our procedures in place, our workers hired, our materials purchased and our project in the works. Doesn’t the world know what we’re up to? Don’t people realize that we have great things to offer them? Isn’t it obvious?
Let’s invite people to our “banquets.” There is so much to be shared if we just put out the word!
I don’t mind eating in a restaurant alone.
I don’t mind taking a long drive by myself.
I always prefer shopping for swimming suits in solitude. And there are days when I long for a few minutes to wind down and chill out…all alone.
But when the times are tough…there is nothing like having a friend beside me.
Economic times are tough. Sales can be hard to come by. Business owners seem nervous about parting with every penny. There are times when we feel like it’s us against the world.
Yet when we join hands and begin to work together…with and for each other…our situations look totally different.
When it comes to the world, I’d rather you and I would greet it together.
Do you ever feel invisible?
Have you ever put on your best Sunday dress, slipped on your high-heeled black patent leather shoes, styled your hair and taken extra pains to make sure your makeup was flawless…only to realize that no one even knew you were in the room?
Sometimes what we perceive as our best look just isn’t enough to get the attention we need. Every one of us can put on our best suit and tie, shine our shoes and put on a happy face, but none of those efforts guarantees visibility…especially when everyone around us is dressed the same way.
What sets us apart from the crowd? Why should people choose to do business with us instead of our competitors? What will it take for us to be “seen?”
Start asking your best customers what got their attention…and starting dressing for that kind of success. Whatever it takes…visibility beats invisibility every day of the year.
Maybe it was because I was on vacation and was enjoying the long stretches of silence in my days. Maybe it was because I have an aversion to being bombarded with an over-abundance of words. Maybe it was because I caught the deer in the headlights look of the person across the room from me. Whatever the case, I was reminded again of the need for white space.
I was sitting at a table alone, waiting for my meal to be served. At a table about 20 feet from me, there were two people discussing business over lunch. Discussing is a generous term in this case, because the truth is that one of the two people was talking and gesturing with such a fervor that the other guy didn’t have a chance to get a word in edgewise. The subject matter isn’t really important to know here, but suffice it to say that it was a heavy duty sales pitch that I was witnessing. The pitch-er was in the middle of his wind-up and was really laying it on thick. The pitch-ee looked like he wanted to be anywhere but at that table.
We’ve all been approached by people who, for some reason, believe that the louder and faster they talk, the more likely they are to convince their audience that they are experts on any given subject. My response to people like that is to run screaming from the building! I have the same response to marketing materials that are too wordy or too complex in their design. I want to call up the people who write this stuff and say, “Give me a chance to breathe! Give me some white space!’”
White space is that visual resting place that allows one’s message the time and space to be heard or read and absorbed by a reader. If every possible inch of an ad space is filled with information, the reader’s mind will be unable to focus on any one message…and they will likely walk away without remembering the most important things that were said.
Keep it simple! Let your reader breathe! Let your customer enjoy the white space!