If companies approached their brand and messaging similar to creating a work of art, we would see more persuasive and distinctive messaging. Too many companies try to imitate what others are doing, making sure they are associated with the latest buzz words and trends.

What I like about this painting, “Magna on Canvas” by Morris Louis is that he took visual clues from fellow painters while establishing his own distinctive style. This is what companies should strive for when creating their narrative and messaging.

Distinctive messaging is important to stand out in a competitive marketplace and persuade your audiences that you have a unique solution to solving their problems.

Below are our top ten tips on creating distinctive messaging.

1. Survey the landscape. Analyze what your competitor messaging is within your category and even if you may do it better, build your brand and messaging around what you uniquely own and others are not currently claiming.

2. Form a small team that will create the messaging; try not to involve too many people in the creating process. Too many people and cycles on revisions will often stifle creativity and result in the opposite of distinctive messaging.

3. Talk with internal and external stakeholders. It is important to get people’s input before the creative process. To craft your brand promise and unique positioning, interview key internal and external stakeholders to get their views on what makes you better than others and why customers need you.

4. Identify unique differentiation. Write down all the things that makes you different and then critique it before writing your narrative.

5. From your audits, create a vision, mission and positioning statement that is relevant, credible and differentiating.

6. Create a narrative that encompasses market context and trends, the industry problem, why a new solution is needed, what your unique solution is and the proof points and the use cases to back it up.

7. Test it out with a few skeptics. Analysts, engineers who may challenge it. Make sure it resonates with C-level and also technical people.

8. Use simple language and avoid use of too much jargon.

9. Integrate and reinforce it throughout all marketing and communications channels. This includes everything from your internal employee communications to your outbound marketing efforts including how you use it in media interviews, on your web site and social posts to trade shows.

10. Be consistent. Stick with it and don’t abandon it. Too many times, companies agree on the messaging and quickly forget it and want to change it too quickly. It takes time to be known for your uniqueness and while there will be times to pivot and adapt, give your brand and messaging some longevity. Measure the effectiveness before you start over again.

Ready to create your distinctive narrative? Get outside from your current working environment to look at your company with a different lens. Or reach out to us and we can work together to create something distinctive.

By Michele Landry, President at Tanis Communications