“On January 15, 2009, every person in the world was given a press pass,” says Susan Young, referring to the moment when a ferry passenger scooped the world’s media on the “Miracle on the Hudson” crash with a mobile phone and a Twitter page.
Susan is the founder of Get in Front Communications and author of the newly published The Badass Book of Social Media and Business Communication, which offers proven tips, techniques and insights about how social media works in business and marketing.
One of the coolest things about her is that prior to consulting, speaking and coaching, she worked in journalism and newsrooms, and so has perspective of the “other side of the coin”, knowing what it’s like to be on the receiving end of brands distributing stories to the media.
Having followed Susan – named one of 75 Badass Women on Twitter – and her work at GIFC for many years, I jumped at the chance of a phonecall with her to find out her top takeaways are from 26 years of experience in business communication. Here’s what I learned:
1) Content development is a must, if you aren’t already.
“Content creation is an opportunity to create information that is fresh, exciting and new - which people crave,” says Susan. “When you spend time listening and paying attention to trends is when you create the most compelling content.”
Takeaway: There is no such thing as writer’s block.
2) J.A.R. That’s “Jargon, Adjectives (that are empty) and Rhetoric”.
“No matter what you’re writing, it has to be punchy, full of personality, timely, relevant and new,” says Susan. “Connecting and understanding your audience is more important than using fluffy words of buzz terms. Your writing will be polished and fine-tuned over time.”
Takeaway: The most important part is to keep it personal and make it feel like you’re talking to your reader personally.
3) Networking, relationships and cohesiveness are underrated.
“U.S. News and World Report published that 90% of people are fired because they have poor attitude or interpersonal skills and don’t gel well within their team or task force – not because of performance related issues,” Susan says.
Takeaway: This statistic is shocking! Having emotional intelligence and great interpersonal relationships is key to connecting with people on a level that makes you trusted as a business.”
These takeaways are so simple yet so often overlooked. What business communications rules would you add to this list?