Art of Message

Art of Message – July 6, 2023

Little known fact about impostor syndrome

Here’s the fact: it’s not in the DSM.

That doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist, though; it just means it’s hard to diagnose as a distinct mental disorder.

Impostor syndrome exists, instead, as a psychological experience – patterns of thoughts, feelings and behaviors where the through-line is anxiety, even pre-emptive anxiety.

“If I frame it that way, people will think I’m _______”.

Yes, this is normal and yes, it means – congratulations – you’re not a sociopath. But let’s be real, it also cuts your revenue, ultimately.

And impostor syndrome can be a group experience too – people at companies feed one another narratives, or just self-deprecating jokes, that validate doubts. This makes it easy to:

  • take refuge in the “features” of your product, rather than go hard on unique value proposition
  • emphasize how you’re the same as competitors; you belong, really
  • indulge in aloof, indirect messaging
  • say too much or try to hard to prove your worth

Actually, this is why firms end up hiring an external strategist – for the latter, making a strong claim about how the company is different is emotionally uncomplicated.

Message Maps has the same effect. Given enough information in discovery, it crafts a positioning strategy that leapfrogs right over your company’s impostor syndrome and stakes your flag in the ground. Which is essential for a tool that rapidly creates sales and marketing messaging to help grow revenue.

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