Get The Attention Of Your Customers First Time Every Time

4 Minute Mission #4: Explain your business in the simplest terms possible (5 year old simple)

Small Business ClarityThe attention spans of your customers are shorter than ever. We all have more information around us to process almost all the time, so to cope we use a radical filter that brutally ignores all the information that is not relevant for us at any given time.

But as well as discarding all irrelevant messages, businesses, and people, we also discard all vague or unclear messages. We know (from first-hand experience) that the vast majority of messages we’re bombarded with are NOT relevant, so messages are filtered out as irrelevant by default, and only those that clearly and instantly demonstrate their importance will get any attention at all.

If your business CAN pass this initial relevance test, you break through into a place where attention is plentiful for the few that make it. The goal in this series of missions on Clarity is to make sure your business can break through this attention barrier consistently, with the first message people read or hear about you.

Watch The Video


Your mission – Explain your business in the simplest terms possible.


Clarity simply means easily understood. For your message to be easily understood it must be:

  • Simple (short, plain language) – as a starting point, try to explain your business to a 5 year old.
  • Specific – unless the first message I see specifically names me or my problem very clearly, you’ve lost me.


Clarity enables a message from your business to be read (or heard) and completely understood in just a few seconds. Since this message will (or should) run through every interaction people have with your business, it has a critical impact on how often your business is noticed, remembered, and talked about.

Small Business Touchpoints

Just to be clear, your key message will form part of the tagline or heading on your website, the sign in your shop window, the signwriting on your car, your ad in the Yellow Pages, and what you say to prospects who call you on the phone. No matter where someone finds or learns about your business, they should instantly know who you are, what you offer, and who should buy from you.


A simple and compelling statement of what you offer and who you serve has two huge benefits:

  1. If done well, you can grab your customer’s attention as surely as if you’d just called out their name.
  2. Clarity for you – the business owner. This statement should remind you what your business is promising to your customers and how you are striving to be different from your competitors. It can give your business direction by acting as a compass to help keep you focused on the benefits that you offer that your competitors don’t.

Your One Task Today

Write a simple explanation of your business.

It should fit on the back of a business card. Just keep it simple and spend only a few minutes on this for now.

Consultant Killers Pitch

Revision 1: The Consultant Killers help business owners step up and build something remarkable with one small step every week.

Revision 2: The Consultant Killers help business owners take small steps towards a remarkable business.

I think it’s improving but let me know which you prefer…

Extra Yard

In the next few missions in theis series on Clarity, we’ll work on improving this explanation. Why? A killer explanation of what you offer can be the cornerstone message for your website, advertising materials, social media, your elevator pitch, your pitch to possible JV partners, sales calls, email marketing, and so on. In short, improving this one message (and implementing it throughout your business) could on its own take you from being an average forgettable business to one that is noticed, remembered, and talked about more often.


Here are some statistics about online attention spans. Summary: You have 8 seconds to get your message across.

What is the first thing you want people to know about your business?

I’d love for you to leave your business’s message as a comment below. Feel free to link to your website so I can check it out!

See you soon for the next mission…


P.S. Find more 4 Minute Missions here…


  1. This is a really hard one for us… we are just starting out in business consultancy and we haven’t got our elevator pitch down (or our website past just being there!)
    Today I wrote this description:
    We help small businesses get to the next level with action plans that are simple and practical, supported by personal guidance.
    Your thoughts?

    • Dave Gillen says:

      Hi Jennifer, I’ve been away overseas so sorry for the delay!

      Your elevator pitch is tough when starting out because you’re having to make it up from scratch. But as you begin to serve some clients, your pitch should start to write itself because you can base it on what you are actually doing for your customers. You’ll be able to shape it based on what you’ve delivered, how you’ve delivered it, and the benefits your clients are appreciating most.

      So think back to your last few customers and write what you did for them. You might be able to get more specific about the types of small businesses responding to what you do, and more specific about the action plans (helping them to do what exactly?), and the personal guidance.

      Similarly, on your website I’d encourage you to show examples of what you’ve done for past clients. Showing what you’ve done is a lot more convincing than saying what you’ll do.

      Good luck and feel free to contact me with any more queries.

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