The journalistic nose – why news matters for business owners

(post by Andrew Thorp)

A recent World Cup-themed cartoon from Matt, the Telegraph’s satirist of choice, depicted a domestic scene with a late-middle aged couple. The man, holding an empty beer can, is heading for the kitchen to grab a cold one from the fridge, the essential accompaniment for viewing the match. But his wife stands guard by the fridge, clearly intent on preventing him entering the kitchen. How do we know? Because she’s sprayed a line of squirty cream around his feet and another straight line in front of the fridge!

I love this cartoon for two (business-related) reasons. First, it goes to show how many words you need to use to describe what’s really obvious in a picture. We read a lot into a picture or a story and this is something business presenters should bear in mind when preparing their beloved PowerPoint slides.

Second, Matt and others like him make their living by being topical and surfing on the back of the public mood. We identify more readily with a theme if it’s prominent in the news and, as a business owner, if you can comment on something that’s ‘current’ you’ve got a better chance of grabbing people’s attention with your blog or marketing message.

We have a good friend at Mojo who works as a vocal coach, and of course Phil Neville’s recent attempts at football commentary during the World Cup create a great opportunity for her to explain what makes a good or ineffective voice.

So keep your eyes and ears open for ‘commentary’ opportunities of your own. Find a linkage with something you want to say that enhances your professional standing, and you’ll discover infinite variety in your marketing message.

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About Mojo Your Business

Mojo Your Business is an innovative training & consultancy company based in Manchester, UK. We're passionate about helping businesses and individuals perform better through effective communication. We specialise in corporate storytelling and how it applies to internal and external communication (employee relations, employability skills, leadership, relationship building, sales, marketing and public relations). More at
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