It was only a matter of time before I quoted The Princess Bride on Well Said Wednesday.
Today is that day.
“You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.”
A little context: This week, I am at a week-long retreat with my business coaches in Asheville, North Carolina. I love the learning and I love coming together with like-minded business owners who are also in the program. (Let’s face it, running a small solo business can be a lonely endeavour.)
It is also a chance to get some fresh perspective on messaging.
For instance, the word “coach.”
For a long time, I resisted calling myself a “content coach” because — ugh. The word “coach” is so overused and what does it even mean anyway?
But here’s the thing. My clients responded well — really well — to having a content coach. For them, it was descriptive of our relationship. I wasn’t writing for them, I was teaching them how to be a better writer for their business.
This week, my colleagues in the coaching program helped me see the word “editor” in a new light.
A writer and communication type pretty much all my life, I had no problem with the word “editor.” Magazine Editors in Chief were my role models. Editing is part of the work I do for clients.
Turns out, for people who haven’t been writers and communication types pretty much all their lives feel very differently about the word “editor.”
In fact, when I asked my mastermind group what their reaction to the word was, all three people visibly recoiled. Seriously. They pulled back from the table and me.
Then they word associated with me and came up with “fear,” “judgement,” “criticism” and “red ink.”
Clearly, I kept using that word, but it did not mean to my clients what I thought it meant.
Because my process with people is anything but fearful, judgemental, critical. And I don’t use red ink. So I know I have to carefully craft how I position the content review work (see what I did there?) that is part of my Master Your Message Content Coaching program.
Always take the opportunity to run messaging past people who represent your ideal clients. It’s the best way to get out of your own head, break through your own thinking and see things from a new perspective.
Which leaves me with just one last thing to say.
“So long boys. Have fun storming the castle!”