Example of Bringing Your Benefits to Life: Literally and Figuratively

September 26th, 2011

Show, don’t tell, and whenever possible, defy gravity! Last week I had the pleasure of speaking to two different Virginia state associations in the AEC (Architectural, Engineering, Construction) industry:  the Society of Design Administrators and Society of Professional Engineers. Like many other firms in other industries, it’s an ongoing challenge to stand out and set your firm apart when prospects often think “you all look alike, same-o, same-o, just tell me your price.” I’m always pounding the drum that encourages anyone in this situation to go beyond describing their products and services, and instead, bring your benefits to life. A….

Posted in Advertising, AEC, General, Marketing | 1 Comment »


Tautology: When Twice is Once Too Much

August 25th, 2011

You know how it is when you learn a new word and then it pops up all over? That hasn’t happened yet–not exactly, anyway—but I’m more nervous about writing this email blast than any other. The word is tautology, and while I have not heard or read it since first learning what it is, I have, to my horror, found evidence of it in my own writing and conversations. A tautology is the opposite of an oxymoron, sort of. An oxymoron combines two contradictory terms, like jumbo shrimp. A tautology is unnecessary repetition of meaning, using different and dissimilar words….

Posted in Communication, General, Random Thoughts, Observations | 12 Comments »


Go Below the Line

May 2nd, 2011

Response is what you get Above-the-Line. Relationships are built Below-the-Line. The seventh mistake of the seven marketing mistakes every business makes (from the book by yours truly) is that we don’t go far enough. We want to think that if we just find our target audience, identify our attraction factor, create a compelling offer or message and communicate it enough times, the prospect will “buy.” That’s what I call your Above-the-Line strategy. The problem is that most prospects don’t do what we want them to do, when we want them to do it, just because we asked them so nicely….

Posted in Advertising, General, Marketing, Sales | No Comments »


Funny Friday: Too Young for American Idol, But I’d Vote for Him

March 25th, 2011

I couldn’t say (or sing) TGIF any better. Enjoy! And I hope your weekend is anything but blah.

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Tell me something I don’t know

December 8th, 2010

I spoke at a marketing conference about three years ago and recently got a call from the new conference committee chair . Apparently someone who heard me speak back then was now on the 2011 committee, and she recommended bringing me back. “Have you got any new material?” the committee chair asked me. Yes, I did, but I hesitated telling him so. I had just been chatting with a colleague about the notion that for a presentation to be worthwhile it has to be full of new, never-heard-before information, and I didn’t want to reinforce that notion. The colleague I….

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Posted in Communication, General, Presentation Skills | 3 Comments »


Perfecting Your Pitch: You Can’t Be Blah.

October 14th, 2010

The more alike any two businesses (or job candidates are) the more important every difference becomes in getting you hired. Why? Because the client is looking for them! Looking closely and deliberately, just the way you do when you look at identically dressed identical twins. You are looking for even the slightest thing to distinguish one from the other, and once you see it, it stands out like a beacon. That’s why you should prepare your proposals, RFP responses, cover letter, resume and ultimately your new business pitch or interview by anticipating what most other people do. And then do….

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Timeout for a Personal Turning Point

June 15th, 2010

It was a simple question, but I had two answers. There was the one I didn’t like, probably because it came straight from my gut and, ultimately, I knew it was the right answer. I also had the polite, Pollyanna answer, the one I concocted to say aloud when it was my turn to share with the group. Answer it truthfully, or tell the lie? I went with the lie. I lied to them, I lied to myself and I lied to Mark LeBlanc, who had posed the question at one of his Achiever’s Circle weekends in 2001. I was….

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Posted in Communication, General, Random Thoughts, Observations | 4 Comments »


Maybe you don’t need presentation skills after all?

April 14th, 2010

I recently had the opportunity to work with an architectural firm on what most people might call presentation skills. I love doing that kind of work, but I always hesitate when the opportunity first presents itself. Why? Because most people don’t need presentation skills training. They think they do. They think that if they just knew what to do with their slides, notes and moveable body parts their presentation problems would be solved. Not necessarily; not in my experience. You see, there are three parts to any message you want to communicate: 1. Content:  what you’re going to say. 2…..

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Funny Website Names

February 26th, 2010

CAUTION:  This post is rated PG-13. I am a big fan of using initial caps when typing or printing a website url because it just makes it so much easier for the reader to “get it.” That’s why I always use www.MaverickMarketing.com for my consulting and workshop site or www.BlahBlahBlah.us for my speaking site. Wait till you see the sites my friend Scott “Q” Marcus, THINspirational Speaker and Recovering Perfectionist, told me about. Here are a few where punctuation–a capital letter here and there–makes  all the difference in the world. Enjoy! (And smile, it’s Friday.) Experts Exchange is a knowledge….

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Q&A for a Competitive Advantage

January 13th, 2010

1.  Who is your competition? That’s neither a rhetorical or “dumb” question. Your competition is both physical and mental. You could probably fill a page with a list of companies you consider to be competitors, and perhaps you should. However, the only competition you have to be concerned with is the competition that exists in the minds of your prospects. Who else are they considering buying this product or service from? Maybe your competition is invisible. Maybe you’re the only source being considered. You still have competition—complacency. Maybe they’re contemplating doing it themselves, or not doing anything. How would that….

Posted in Advertising, Communication, General, Marketing, Sales | 2 Comments »


Terri Langhans

Terri Langhans, CSP, COE
Certified Speaking Professional
Chief of Everything
Blah Blah Blah Etc., Inc.



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