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Master Your Message: Expert Tips On Sharing Your Message In Our Virtual World

Over the years, I’ve worked with a countless number of individuals and companies on crafting verbal messages that will resonate with their audience. Note that I say “verbal” for a reason. Why? Because the way we write and the way we speak are two very different things, and it is important to know this.

According to HubSpot, people remember 95% of a video’s message compared to 10% of what they read in text. This means that the way you communicate your message (i.e. the main point you want people to remember about you and your work) and doing so verbally matters in a big way, whether it is a social media video, a Facebook Live, a speaking engagement, a new business call,  a media interview, and more.

How can you share your message in a way that inspires people to take action, gets them to invest in you and your work, is relatable, and most importantly, that they remember you?

First, you need to put in the work to ensure our message is delivered in a powerful way that is resonating and remembered. Don’t ever try to “wing” your message. This takes time and consideration to craft your message in a way that speaks to your audience and gets them excited about what you do!

Whether you’re preparing for a business meeting, virtual presentation, or media interview, here are my top tips to communicate your message effectively and leave your audience in no doubt why that message matters. 

  • Keep it simple. You are an expert in your subject matter, but oftentimes your audience is not. Remember to keep your message simple and relatable. As a rule of thumb, I recommend communicating your message as if you are speaking to a middle schooler or above.
  • Keep it short. If you can keep your message to under 30 seconds (or 75 words), in the English speaking language, people are more likely to remember it!
  • Showcase Your Credibility. This is your reputation, how believable you are. You can highlight your experience by saying, “I’ve spent 20 years in the industry…” or “after extensive research…” 
  • Show Empathy. Being able to understand another’s situation makes you less robotic and more relatable.
  • Tell A Story. This is really where the magic happens in your message. People remember stories because stories have outcomes and lessons, so try to incorporate a story into your message.
  • Keep It Positive. Even the word “No” or “I don’t know” can be negative. If you can try eliminating negative phrases from your verbal communication, people will more likely be able to understand the message you are trying to get across and therefore a better chance of being remembered.
  • Repetition is the key to retention! People always ask, is it OK to repeat my main message? Absolutely! The more you repeat it, the more likely people will remember it. Find natural ways to share your message more than once in a conversation, interview, or presentation.
  • Use Power Words – These are words that help you move a conversation forward in a constructive way, no matter what topic is on the table.  A few of my favorites include: excited, proud, motivated, and dedicated.
  • Practice your message out loud! If you have written or typed your message, you’ve only done 10% of the work. The other 90% involves you practicing saying your message out loud. Practice on your own Zoom line, practice in the mirror, practice with your partner and colleagues, and get your message ingrained in your bones!

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Tracy Mccubbin

AUTHOR, MAKING SPACE, CLUTTER FREE

"The biggest piece of advice a first-time author is given is to “hire your own publicist,” but what they don’t tell you is to “hire your own Ashley.”  Looking back, I don’t know how I could have released my book without Ashley & her team.  We started working together before the book was published.  First local TV and small blogs and as I got more seasoned and the book got closer to coming, she booked me appearances on bigger and bigger outlets. 

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Susan Peirce Thompson, Ph.D.

New York Times Best Selling Author of Bright Line Eating: The Science of Living Happy, Thin, and Free

"The biggest piece of advice a first-time author is given is to “hire your own publicist,” but what they don’t tell you is to “hire your own Ashley.”  Looking back, I don’t know how I could have released my book without Ashley & her team.  We started working together before the book was published.  First local TV and small blogs and as I got more seasoned and the book got closer to coming, she booked me appearances on bigger and bigger outlets. 

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Susan McGinnis

Correspondent, CBS Newspath

“I am so pleased that Ashley is embarking on this new venture. For many years she has shined as an outstanding booker and producer at CBS News and at start-ups including Clean Skies News.  She was my first hire at Clean Skies, and was the shining star among the pack. She has always had  tremendous dedication to her work, and an untiring ability to accomplish whatever faces her, letting no obstacle stand in the way of an outstanding product.  She consistently goes above and beyond expectations, and never takes “no” as an answer, and never settles for less than outstanding. I would hire Ashley again. And again. And again.”

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Jennifer Oko

Partner, Mad Squid Media

“Ashley and I have worked together is a few different capacities, including CBS News, energyNOW!. I cannot say enough good things about her. Ashley is smart, thorough, quick, creative, and incredibly hard working. Most importantly, to be a successful media liaison and guest booker, relationships are everything. Ashley is a genuinely lovely person, and she wins the respect and trust of everyone she works with. She is the first person I call whenever I need a guest booker or segment producer.”

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Margaret Ryan

Energy Journalist & Analyst

“Ashley Bernardi is a dynamic professional who consistently produces excellent results.  In my three years working with Ashley as the head booker at Clean Skies News/EnergyNOW!, I never saw her fail to complete a job she had been assigned – and complete it admirably. Ashley is creative, energetic and goal-oriented, a true team player who works congenially with other professionals but can also be relied on to execute an assignment on her own. Ashley is the person I wanted on my team when I faced a challenging assignment!”

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Hardy Spire

Senior Producer, CNN’s Reliable Sources. Former General Manager at CleanSkies News and Senior Producer at CBS News.

“Ashley Bernardi has every rare quality in a TV producer — aggressiveness, insight, creativity, a strong work ethic, and pure charm.  She has all this plus she’s a kind and positive person.  And she has great contacts!”

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Silvio Marcacci

Principal, Marcacci Communications

“Ashley is hands down the best media trainer I’ve ever worked with, and she uses her considerable producing experience to make clients feel at ease and ready to learn. In addition, her ability to book clients on television and radio interviews is quite impressive – be ready for hours of interviews if you’re working with her!”

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Mary Jordan

Washington Post National Correspondent and Founding Editor of Washington Post Live

“There is nothing Ashley Bernardi cannot do when it comes to media.  She books top people for TV shows and national conferences and knows the business inside out. I worked closely with Ashley at the Washington Post  and she is not only savvy, but great to be around. She is the always cheerful, smart voice on the other end of the phone who persuades busy people to drop everything they are doing and do what Ashley tells them.”

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Scott Behson, PhD

best-selling author of The Working Dad’s Survival Guide: How to Succeed at Work and at Home

“I was a relatively unknown first-time author and Ashley was fantastic in getting my name out there, and ultimately booking me on national TV and radio, as well as major podcasts. She also provided top-notch media training and was always a great listener and advisor. Finally, she was on top of everything and we communicated constantly. I couldn’t have been happier about her efforts on behalf of my book launch!”

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Ron Friedman, Ph.D

author of The Best Place to Work: The Art and Science of Creating an Extraordinary Workplace

“Ashley Bernardi is extraordinary at her job in every way. Smart, strategic and relentlessly energetic, Ashley is someone I’d want on my team in any public relations campaign.”