no one cares about your company’s history

I’m sure you’ve had this happen to you.

Someone is making a sales pitch or educational presentation to you. They need your attention. Then as they begin, they say…

but before we get started let me tell you a little about our company. It was founded by Joe Whatsisname back in 1923. We merged with Whatsicallit Corp in 1934. The new company decided…

And on it goes for the next several slides and minutes.

Why lead with this?

It’s the equivalent of pulling out slides of your parent’s trip to the Grand Canyon when visitors enter your front door. It’s only mildly interesting to the person presenting. It’s sheer boredom to the audience and the potential customer.

But you might say they need to know the history of the company so they can see our longevity in the market and make an informed purchase decision…

Okay. Then in the first 5 minutes of your next job interview, tell the interviewer about the writing award you got in 7th grade.

It falls back to one of my fundamental precepts of marketing and communication. Approach all communication from the audience’s perception, not yours.

Tell them things they care about and want to know, not what you (or corporate) want to tell them.

Chris Houchens is a marketing raconteur & writer. Connect with him on Twitter or Facebook.

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One comment on “no one cares about your company’s history
  1. Alan Needham says:

    I have sat through countless presentations that started exactly the way you describe. Occasionally someone who “gets it” will focus on presenting how they can meet the needs that we have described to them. If we want to know more about how long they have been in business or other aspects of their history, we will ask. Hopefully more people will follow your well founded advice.