Repeatable Sound Bites

You know you did a good job communicating your message when it’s easy for people to recall it, repeat it, and communicate it to others. The way to do this is to implant a handful of succinct, clear, and repeatable sound bites in your presentation—ones that your audience will remember without effort after they’re gone.

A carefully crafted sound bite can work as a S.T.A.R. moment— Something They’ll Always Remember-not only for those who attend your presentation, but also for those who encounter it second hand through conventional broadcast channels or social media.

Press: Coordinate key phrases in your talk with the same language in the press release. Repeating critical messages verbatim ensures that the press will pick up the right sound bites. The same is true for any camera crews that might be filming your presentation. Make sure you have at least a fifteen- to thirty-second message that is so salient it will be obvious to the reporter that it should be featured in the broadcast.

Social Media: Create crisp messages. Picture each person in the audience as a little radio tower empowered to repeat your key concepts over and over. Some of the most innocent-looking audience members have fifty thousand followers in their social networks. When one sound bite is sent to their followers, it can get re-sent hundreds of thousands of times.

Rally Cry: Craft a small, repeatable phrase that can become the slogan and rallying cry of the masses trying to promote your idea. President Obama’s campaign slogan, “Yes We Can,” originated from a speech during the primary elections.

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