Pacesetter Media Blog

We Know Media, We Know Code, We Know Design

Advice, Tips, and Tricks for the New Reality

Wow, things changed fast.

I’m preparing newsletters and blog posts for the coming weeks with info on marketing in these stay-at-home times. Topics include

  • how to use social media
  • how to use your website to support customers and employees
  • using video online
  • online meetings
  • newsletters

Please Share: What lessons have you learned?

Please share any lessons you learn along the way. We’re all in this together. Anything you learn could help others in the same situation. Send us a message with any tips, please.

Dwelling on a Positive Thought

As we all learn to work with our situation, let’s often dwell on a positive thought for ourselves and for others:

We got this.

How to Get Your Point Across in 30 Seconds

When I joined a new networking group last year, the kind where every week you speak for a minute about your business, I remembered a perfect little book from over twenty years ago: How to Get Your Point Across in 30 Seconds or Less, by Milo O. Frank. It’s full of practical tips on delivering a short message.

So I reviewed my notes from a class I taught based on this book. I’m including some of the tips here. They’ll help you focus your message in spoken, written, and video communications. Here goes.

Have a Single Objective

Your objective is your goal, purpose or destination.

  • It is why you are there. You can have only one objective.
  • In every form of business communication, your thoughts and words should introduce, reinforce or help you achieve your objective.
  • You do not have to state your objective except to yourself.
  • The FIRST BASIC PRINCIPLE of the 30‑second message is to have a SINGLE CLEAR-CUT OBJECTIVE

Who’s Listening

Go to the RIGHT PERSON, the person who can give you what you want.

  • Know as many facts as possible about the person or persons you’ll be talking to.
  • Identify with your listener. What does he/she want from you, and what one thing more than any other will get a favorable reaction from him?
  • Knowing your listeners and what they want is the SECOND BASIC PRINCIPLE of the 30‑second message.

The Right Approach

The right approach is the single thought or sentence that will best lead to your objective. To me, this is the strategy to appeal to your audience. It’s about appealing to your audience’s motivation.

  • The right approach will also take into consideration the needs and interests of your listener.
  • The right approach will give you focus, and always keep you on track toward achieving your objective.

Knowing WHAT you want, WHO can give it to you and HOW to get it are the three BASIC PRINCIPLES of the 30‑second message.

The Hook

A hook is a statement or an object used to get attention.To get your listener’s or reader’s attention, use a hook as the first statement in your 30-second message.

  • Your hook should relate to your objective, your listener and your approach.
  • Your hook can be a question or a statement, and it can be dramatic or humorous. If it’s a question, it must be answered.
  • Anecdotes or personal experiences make excellent hooks. Your entire message can be a hook.

Your Subject

The subject explains and reinforces your objective.

  • The subject contains and corresponds to your approach.
  • What, Who, Where, When, Why and How are all part of your subject. The subject is what your 30­‑second message is all about.
  • Know your subject and present it as concisely and forcefully as possible.

Ask for It

A message without a specific request is a wasted opportunity. He who don’t ask, don’t get.

  • Decide your close in advance.

Find More in the Book

This just scratches the surface. There’s lots more in the book to improve your spoken, written, and video communications

Find the book on Google

Schema.org Structured Data

Structured Data: Mark Up Website Content for Search Engines

Schema.org is the place. It’s the primary source of information on structured data for websites. Why is that important to business? Because it’s used by Google, Bing and Yahoo.

First some terminology:

Structured Data
On websites, a way to mark information so major search engines can better read it. Schema.org explains in detail the how and what.
Schema
A prescribed list of data to include. Sometimes it’s general like data about any kind of organization. And sometimes it’s specific like data about a tattoo parlor.

It’s hidden from casual visitors. Behind the scenes, though, search engines and anybody with a little know-how can find the data.

Which leads to another point: structured data is a little technical. You need to know a little bit about HTML to implement it in code, but there are several WordPress plugins that make it a little easier on WordPress sites.

With this mark up, you can give search engines easy access to important information about your company, products, events, locations, and lots more. For most businesses, priority should be on the basic data: company name, locations, description, contact information. For online selling, you should add details about your products. For restaurants, the menu, hours and location are important. For any place with events, event details are important.

And specific types of businesses have their own schemas like dentists, tattoo parlors, and attorneys. And specific offerings have their own schemas like creative works (songs, photographs, books), events, and products.

It Helps How Your Site is Displayed on Search Engines

First understand that it’s a thing: structured data is a semi-hidden part of website development. It won’t necessarily boost your ranking. But it can change what information Google displays.

With the right structured data, Google shows rich snippets for some searches. See Google’s “Understand how structured data works” for more info.)

So priority should be your basic information: company name, contact information, description, link to your logo. Then evaluate other opportunities based on your business goals like products, events and pictures.