Sorry if you missed my last post, but I’m also a little sorry if you read it, maybe. Because if you happened to see it, you know that my brain is about ready to explode from Content Marketing overload.
I did go off on a rant of sorts about everyone’s favorite subject of these times, of the New Age of Advertising and Marketing, and in every business circle as well. But you have to admit, there’s an awful lot of material out there and like me, you could possibly explode from content overload!
It’s a simple, complicated concept all in all, and I’ve decided to try to calm your nerves in figuring out just how to go about it and do it well.
Stop. I’ve deceived you a bit because how to do it really well is a different whole discussion and one for another, more in depth, article. Look for that juicy material soon.
But still, I promise to help untangle you from the content clutter by taking you on my backwards journey. By starting at the core, you will be equipped with a solid framework for success and a foundation for developing your content creation and strategies, moving forward.
Based on my many years in business, I believe many businesses have failed by not doing their homework in this regard.
You really need to take out the microscope to look deep at the core to know and understand, exactly, your purpose for being. Without doing so, you are jeopardizing your chances for long term success. Worse, you will waste and lose valuable time and resources to misdirection.
Whether you are a well established brand, new to business, or growing your company, it all begins at the core.
It’s the fireball at the center from where all the other sparks fly!
The core is who you are and who you proclaim to be by what you do and how you do it. It’s your essence…what you’re made of.
Mainly, it’s the heart of your organization, and what it strives to be, and also, is the foundation from which everything else works.
To zero in on identifying your core, most businesses develop a Statement of Purpose, also known as Mission, Vision and Values.
Not only is this an important key concept for any business, but it is also an essential blueprint to guide and ultimately, anchor, all of your operations. It should be:
✅ well thought out
✅ clearly and concisely stated, and;
✅ known and understood by all stakeholders.
Your statement of purpose, thus establishing your core is, in a way, the most significant of all content created for a business.
It’s the fireball at the center from where all the other sparks fly! And you need a solid, hot burning fireball to cause the explosion you want for your business.
Crafting Your Fireball is a crucial step before creating any content.
Sometimes discovering your Statement of Purpose is extremely simple and straight-forward.
As in, “I am XYZ Company, and this is what I do.” The point is to identify who you are and what you do (or offer) succinctly. This sets the main focus for everything that follows.
For small organizations, this can be as simple as a defining tagline, slogan, motto or creed. The key is to establish a strong identity and create a distinct focus.
For more complex organizations, a Mission Statement is crafted as the foundation that:
- sets the focus
- establishes direction, and
- identifies “who we are and what we do” in a compelling, understandable way.
Particularly when you have employees, adding Vision and Values statements help further explain, guide and clarify the Mission Statement on a deeper level. Further, large companies have a written Policy or Code of Ethics.
To support the Mission’s overview, a company’s Vision is a statement (usually a sentence or two, sometimes a couple of paragraphs or an outline) providing the details to create a sort of guiding philosophy to aspire to, telling how you are going to get to your targeted results.
Clarity is crucial in developing this statement. It has to present a clear, concrete, and easy to understand path to accomplish your stated Mission and to keep business on a specific and desired route.
Like Mission, the Vision and Values statements act as key guidelines for operations, help set the tone, impact corporate culture and promote the singular voice of the company.
Values, stated within this overall framework, set your core beliefs and define morals as a compass for how you will conduct business.
So, as Vision expresses the how for you to get there, Core Values tell you by what code or ethics.
Communicating these statements and philosophies should begin within the company at orientation/training and eventually filters out, resulting in customers who understand and embrace them as well.
Write this down. Make it count.
Whether you’re an entrepreneur, solopreneur, company, corporation or organization of any kind, a Statement of Purpose (MVV) in a written format is an important key factor to your business identity.
It should be written, posted, shared, and understood by all. It’s the beaming mother ship that directs everything you say or do.
And when both internal and external audiences are on the same page, a real connect occurs and communications can finally begin in a truly meaningful way.
And in this way, MVV are the basis to establishing your brand. Craft them with a critical purpose because it will function as the framework and cornerstone for all business operations.
You’ll be doing yourself a huge favor by making sure you, and everyone around you, has a clear picture of who you really are and what you really do and why.
Review and update your MVV Statement often, testing that it aligns with the current business environment and parameters in which you are presently working.
With the speed of business, technology and change, a scheduled review may be the hot ticket.
1.) At one time, these MVV statements were developed for a business once and once only and set in stone from that day forward. Some still may do this. But that won’t work in this economy, in a tech savvy business environment, or within the continuously changing business landscape.
Flexibility, changeability and adaption are part of today’s leading organizations and, for a reason. Embrace this even in your Strategic Planning.
2.) Look for and listen closely to input from inside and outside of the company. Sometimes a “company” has a real eye opener as to who they really are when they allow themselves to examine and be open to all prospectives including employees, clients, even competitors.
Better yet, ask for employees’ input and listen especially to those who deal with customers. The more input and ideas you have to work with, the better, when crafting an effective MVV.
Sometimes you learn that how others see you isn’t what you thought at all and now, thankfully, you can use what you learn to better position yourself and adjust to a business model for success.
Identifying your core…who you really are and what you’re really about…and crafting your center fireball…from where all the other sparks fly…will be the next objective presented in Process for Crafting Your Fireball Core. (coming soon)
In this, I will tell you exactly how to find your own unique core and create a strong Statement of Purpose and a Mission, Vision and Values Statement, but hopefully, you are thinking about uncovering your own core fireball already.
Additionally, a close examination of your ideal customer comes into play in finding your core and essential reason for being. As in every part of your business existence, understanding who you serve and on an intimate level, will be crucial to your future sales and success.
Simply stated, doing business in 2015 and beyond is about having a solid understanding of a user-centric business model where your customers and prospects lead the way.
Therefore, they will significantly play a part in establishing your Mission. Who they are has oh-so-much to do with who you are and why you are.
Differentiation starts at this intersect as well.
Think about you, think about your ideal customer, and think about your product or service features and benefits so you are ready to dig in on the next key topic: Process for Crafting Your Fireball Core.
Hint: Think about your “Elevator Speech” in preparation for the next topic. Look for building blocks and templates to design your own unique Statement of Purpose or MVV and find the most powerful core fireball to drive your business.
Good luck and let me know how you’re coming or if you have questions or input on this topic.