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Selling Your Big Idea Internally, Part 2 of 5 — Enterprise & Management 2.0

Selling Your Big Idea Internally, Part 2 of 5

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Building Your “Idea” Story

In part 1 of 5 we covered the basis of producing a solid idea that will gain traction. Once you’ve received the support needed to get to the next round, you’ll need to frame your idea with a strong story. At this point, you need to give your target audience something to remember and talk about. It needs to stick and forming your pitch around a story is the best way on how to do this.

People don’t get excited about figures, facts, and statistics, even though it is still an essential pillar for your idea. What people will embrace after your pitch is the story that explains the facts and the situation you’re trying to improve. Therefore, the narrative must be simple and compelling. Let’s take a look at a quick guide to help you.

  • Intuitive – This means that your idea needs to connect with the audience according to their view of the world. It needs to make sense to them and not question their belief system. Be smart by stepping into their world with your idea not having them step into your world with your idea.
  • Feel Good – No one wants to listen to an idea that makes them feel bad about themselves or question the morals of society. Make the audience feel good about the decision to adopt your idea. Build on aspects of the environment, society, improving life, and helping to reduce problems socially or economically.

“When you’re trying to sell somebody a new idea, you must persuade them that the idea confirms their own opinions, rather than proves them wrong.” Author Seth Godin

Let’s now take look at some examples to clarify this important step in gaining traction. One of the best ways to build a story is to tie it to current events, corporate issues, or benchmarks from successful companies. Let’s assume your firm just lost a huge customer, chances are that the Sales Department is worried about a larger spill of clients (their world-view). You should come in with an idea that directly addresses the situation to retain and build loyalty among existing and potential customers. Furthermore, if a competitor launched a successful product and your company has better technology, your idea should show how your firm can leap frog the competition by returning to their roots of technology to devise a new and improved product.

In part 3 of our 5 series post will get into the meat of the decision maker. I’ll explain how to map your idea and motivate the decision maker to take action. Please provide any comments, suggestions, and/or feedback in the written comments below.

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