Mental File Folders

Bootcamp Week #2: If you’re just joining the Bootcamp, here’s what you need to do to get started: 1. Messaging Roadmap, 2. Sign up for our free Tune-Up Tuesday videos, and 3. Complete messaging to-do’s outlined for you each week on our blog. (Go back and do last week’s to get caught up!)

Point B: Mental File Folders (watch the vid)

Last week, you figured out your Belief Proposition. You identified why your organization exists and what would be different in your community if it didn’t exist.

This week, you need to pick your mental file folder. Many organizations fall into the trap of reciting everything they do right out of the gate. When you tell people your everything, they remember nothing. Bummer. That’s why the goal is to whittle it down to the one thing that you do that represents the essence of your organization. This is what fuels word-of-mouth marketing. Why? Because you are making it easy for people to refer others to you. Why? Because they only have to remember one thing about you–and that one thing is the most compelling, authentic thing. So, in the end, it all works out. It just feels scary at first.

(If you don’t believe me on this, listen to Seth Godin. He’s really, super smart.)

If you’re still feeling like you can’t possibly distill what you do down to one thing (or at most two), read this post about Treehouse. If they can do it, you can do it.

This Week’s Messaging To-Do’s

Write down answers to the following two questions:

  1. What would be the “tab” on the mental file folder you want people to associate with your organization?
  2. What do you do? (Not everything–just your main thing.)

Next Week

Identify your competition. (Hint: You have more of it than you might think!)

Need Some In-Person Help? Come to our Tune-Up Tuesday monthly meet-up in Seattle.  Learn more and register here.


Do you communicate as effectively as you think?


Do you communicate as effectively as you think?