Influence + Impact
There’s a common phrase, “it’s not what you say, it’s how you say it” which, in some cases, is true but in the PR industry, what you say has an impact. Often the decision between a customer choosing you over your competitor depends on your ability to know exactly what to say, when to say it, and how to make it count.
Exactly What to Say: The Magic Words for Influence and Impact by Phil M. Jones gives an in depth look into the meaning behind the words we use and how making little changes to our phrases can transform an experience and sometimes, a career.
Let’s start with the most important but seemingly hardest concept to master: “Breaking the Ice”. You want to know, “How do I make the clients want to listen to me?” Here are a few steps that have worked for us:
Instead of asking, start telling. Make the client feel as though there is no other option but to engage with and trust you. Remember, you don’t want to be too overbearing by making it seem like you are making the decision for them.
Make your audience feel in control of the outcome (which you handpicked and presented in the perfect way.)
Break down barriers between you and your client to allows for open conversation. Negotiating can be difficult with anyone, but especially with strangers. In order to have success with the unfamiliar, you have to make the other party feel relatable.
Highlight “the bright side.” Good news is something we desperately need to hear more of. If appropriate and timely insert it into your conversation.
Our behavior and words are the most powerful tools we possess. Words create relationships and in order to make them last, we need good communication.