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Content isn't hard. Change is.

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Most clients come to designers with an ask, a question: How can we better tell our story? How can we create a strategy that resonates with our audience? They want a new narrative; they want to change their current website. They want a sleeker campaign; they want to tell a different story. But when we give clients what they said they want, the change they asked for; we get pushback and resistance, maybe even some hostility.

Why? Because change is hard. So how do we as content strategists and story advocates help our clients overcome their fears so we can help them reach their goals? And how can we use examples from the creative process to help nurture deeper, more trusting relationships with our clients?

In this talk, VML’s own Leah Sand explores the psychology behind the challenges we face working with clients and she explores tools to help coach clients to move through those challenges with empathy and inclusiveness.

In this session, you’ll learn how to:

- Identify emotional or psychological “blockers.”
- Work with clients to get them more involved in the content process, using empathy, understanding, and tools from positive psychology.
- Use these tools to help break down silos within large organizations to align with content goals.
- Teach empathy to others to facilitate better content ideation.

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Content isn't hard. Change is.

  1. 1. CONTENT ISN’T HARD. CHANGE IS
  2. 2. OR, HOW TO WORK WITH PEOPLE WHO ARE AFRAID OF CHANGE TO TELL BETTER STORIES & TRANSFORM THEIR BUSINESS( )
  3. 3. # A G E N C Y L I F E
  4. 4. + + -LEVEL STORYTELLING O U R C L I E N T A S K E D F O R T H I S
  5. 5. I D E N T I F Y P R O B L E M / O P P O R T U N I T Y D E S I G N T H E S O L U T I O N
  6. 6. W H A T W E ( T H O U G H T W E ) D E S I G N E D
  7. 7. W H A T W E A C T U A L L Y L A U N C H E D
  8. 8. WHERE DID WE GO SO WRONG?
  9. 9. DESIGNING A SEAMLESS EXPERIENCE ISN’T HARD.
  10. 10. CONTENT STRATEGY ISN’T HARD.
  11. 11. CHANGE IS.
  12. 12. REALITY CHECK.
  13. 13. INSTITUTIONS CUSTOMERS LOCATION PRICE INFORMATION Y E S T E R D A Y
  14. 14. INSTITUTIONS CUSTOMERS LOCATION TECHNOLOGY PRICE INFORMATION g T O D A Y
  15. 15. CUSTOMERS ARE CHANGING FASTER THAN BUSINESS ( & THEY’RE CONTROLLING THE NARRATIVE )
  16. 16. “When the rate of change outside exceeds the rate of change inside, the end is in sight.” J A C K W E L C H
  17. 17. ( ) WE ARE NO LONGER DESIGNERS & STRATEGISTS & CREATIVES. WE’RE ADVOCATES FOR CHANGE.
  18. 18. EMPATHY CHECK.
  19. 19. H E R E ’ S O U R S E X Y N E W C O N T E N T S T R A T E G Y & D E S I G N
  20. 20. 70 % OF CHANGE INITIATIVES FAIL TO ACHIEVE THEIR GOALS
  21. 21. “The key to change …… is to let go of fear.” R O S A N N E C A S H
  22. 22. HOW TO COACH YOUR CLIENT TO MOVE THROUGH FEAR & ANXIETY TO EMBRACE CHANGE. IN 7 STEPS.
  23. 23. 01 IDENTIFY THE PROBLEM YOU’RE SOLVING. THE REAL ONE.
  24. 24. 02 CONSIDER YOUR EMPATHY & REMIND THEM: EVERYONE IS GOING THROUGH THIS.
  25. 25. 03 DEFINE WHAT SUCCESS LOOKS LIKE. MAKE IT ATTAINABLE. REPEAT DAILY. PIVOT IF NECESSARY.
  26. 26. 04 DEMYSTIFY THE CREATIVE PROCESS. EXPLAIN IT SIMPLY. REVIEW IT OFTEN.
  27. 27. 05 BRING BOLD IDEAS TO THE TABLE & OFFER YOUR CLIENTS A SEAT.
  28. 28. 06 EMBRACE FAILURE. TALK OPENLY ABOUT LEARNING FROM MISSTEPS.
  29. 29. 07 LISTEN TO YOUR CLIENTS. LISTEN TO THEIR CUSTOMERS. ADAPT AS NEEDED.
  30. 30. “When you talk, you are only repeating what you already know. But if you listen, you may learn something.” D A L A I L A M A X I V
  31. 31. ADVICE FOR MOVING THROUGH THE UNCOMFORTABLE FEELINGS THAT COME WITH CHANGE. ( )
  32. 32. IF YOU’RE ALIVE, YOU CAN CHANGE. * C O U R T E S Y O F E L I Z A B E T H G I L B E R T
  33. 33. YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE A GENIUS. JUST OPEN. * C O U R T E S Y O F E L I Z A B E T H G I L B E R T
  34. 34. MAKE SOMETHING. DO SOMETHING. DO ANYTHING. * C O U R T E S Y O F E L I Z A B E T H G I L B E R T
  35. 35. STOP COMPLAINING & GET TO WORK. * C O U R T E S Y O F E L I Z A B E T H G I L B E R T
  36. 36. FRUSTRATION IS NOT AN INTERRUPTION OF THE PROCESS. IT IS THE PROCESS. * C O U R T E S Y O F E L I Z A B E T H G I L B E R T
  37. 37. LET GO OF YOUR FANTASY OF PERFECTION. * C O U R T E S Y O F E L I Z A B E T H G I L B E R T
  38. 38. YOU CAN’T GET RID OF FEAR, BUT REMEMBER: FEAR IS BORING. * C O U R T E S Y O F E L I Z A B E T H G I L B E R T
  39. 39. IF SOMETHING IS AUTHENTIC ENOUGH, IT WILL FEEL ORIGINAL. * C O U R T E S Y O F E L I Z A B E T H G I L B E R T
  40. 40. OUR SUCCESS AS DESIGNERS & STRATEGISTS IS DIRECTLY DEPENDENT ON OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH CHANGE ( & THE FEELINGS THAT COME ALONG WITH IT )
  41. 41. Q U E S T I O N S ?
  42. 42. THANK YOU vml.com @leah_j_sand

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