Today, people focus more intensely and efficiently than ever before. They have zero tolerance for long-winded explanations, exhaustive chatter, or linguistic tactics. While the entrepreneurial community is making efforts to adjust (driven by the need to survive), for some reason, politicians are having a harder time adapting to today’s audience. It doesn’t have to be that way.
You may have noticed Bernie Sanders leaning into his relationship with Cardi B. You might assume that he’s trying to draft off her pop-culture celebrity and looking to ‘age down’ his perception. While there may be some truth to that, the real value is the brilliance of Cardi B’s messaging. She speaks in sound bites. She translates ideas into simple concepts and direct points. In today’s world, that resonates and is far more productive with the public than another Bernie political speech. On the edge of 2020, people don’t want rhetoric. They want clear and concise information. Ironically, Cardi B delivers that in spades. I bet you never thought you’d be reading about the brilliance of Cardi B’s messaging in Forbes. Welcome to a new world.
When I recently had the chance to consult with a political candidate on their messaging and presentation, my goal was to get the candidate to try to simply convey the information and stop trying so hard to sway voters. Between multiple layers of handlers, being ushered in behind closed doors, and the pages of confidentiality; it was a surreal experience. When the formalities were behind us, I finally got to my core question, “What do you actually want people to understand?” It was incredibly revealing. This candidate was facing the same issues that entrepreneurs deal with daily – problems with their story resonating, separating themselves from the crowd, delivering their message so it’s understood.