I like clients who are trying to make the world a better place. Usually, that’s non-profit organizations, but I also work with businesses that believe they can do well by doing good. And I have a biased view of what “a better place” means. If you want to save the planet, keep families healthy and help the less fortunate, I might be your man. If you’re trying to keep science out of the classroom or think global warming is a hoax, we’re probably not going to hit it off.
My approach is simple: start with a compelling message that speaks to your audience’s (and your) values. Simple, right? Well, it’s harder than it sounds, and many good ideas get bogged down in details, statistics and factual arguments that muddle their message and sound like a debate.
It’s wiser to teach someone how to fish than to sell him fish dinners every month for a retainer fee. I want my clients to end up not needing me anymore. I help build a strong strategic communication foundation of approaches and skills so clients can spend their resources on their audiences, not me.
I’m not just a planner. I know how to do the work, too. When clients don’t have the internal resources to execute their good ideas themselves, they often ask me to serve as an external director of communication or spokesperson.