How to focus your EYES on content development


What’s that saying about the mind believing only what the eyes can see? The basic idea is really about what we choose to focus our eyes on. What we believe is often driven from a “I’ll believe it when I see it” disposition or it’s about only believing what your mind already comprehends … like when you selectively see only the arguments that support something you already believe (which explains a lot about our political divisiveness today, but that’s a whole other story). Hopefully, you will see what I mean and how it relates to business communications.

For several weeks now, I have had an interesting opportunity to see my community with a new focus as a “temporary” resident in a local extended stay hotel. Granted, it is on the property of a local mall and not being much of a shopper, I don’t go there all that often. Still, in the 10 years we have lived in our suburb, I have used the access roads around it a fair bit. So it has really been interesting to find myself living life like a visitor to my town. The eyes seem to see things you never quite saw before.

For example, several times a day, evening and night, I get to rescue doggie from his temporary inside domain to go take care of business outside. How come I never noticed before just how much green space and sidewalks are there? Apparently there’s not much your eyes notice when you are cruising through in hunt of a parking spot or simply passing by on the adjoining road. Thanks to doggie’s determination to cross the road, we even discovered a quaint neighborhood we didn’t know about.

Those eyes quickly refocus when you are looking with a different perspective. One walk, when the grass wasn’t quite dry, made me really stop and think. Despite the newfound pleasant consideration of how nice it is for the mall properties to have such green landscaping, I suddenly refocused on what that really meant. Chemicals! My shoes were covered with something orange that had to be wiped off. Hope that isn’t harmful to doggie’s paws! Environmental sustainability here apparently hasn’t crossed the perception barrier of only being about recycling. I mean, where’s natural over “man-icured?”

But back to business. Focus has everything to do with business, right? It is so easy to get distracted and look at the wrong things. Like when we get bogged down in strategy planning to the point that little “doing” takes place. Or when we measure activity instead of results. With communications of any kind, it is important to have a natural flow – a voice that captures the perception and eye of the intended audience. So here’s a few thoughts to keep your EYES wide open during content development:

Everyone sees the world differently. Perception is reality. Tune in to the perceptions of your target audiences.

Yes, your personal perceptions will influence how you communicate. In business, you are most likely writing on behalf of someone else, like a company executive. Present the world through their eyes.

Engage the audience by speaking their language, not your industry or company jargon. Be sure your words and approach can bring the story to life for different targets.

Speak up when perceptions are not aligned. Know your business and your audience well enough so you can see and explain the big picture.


About csrtrans

President/Senior Consultant & Global PR professional. CSR Transformations, Ltd. offers a consortium of independent consultants from around the world providing contracted expertise in Communications, Public Relations and Corporate Social Responsibility.
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