WHY??? WIIFM

it is Matriculation Day 2017 at The Citadel. Here each student goes from one line to another throughout the day. These are the student officers who will train the Knobs. They are part of the cadre. [Nikon D5, Nikon 85mm ƒ/1.8, ISO 100, ƒ/1.8, 1/1600]

Why?

Well there are many “WHY?” questions when it comes to communication. One that I am discovering is not asked enough is, “Why should the audience care?”

Most organizations want to communicate with an audience in order to get that audience to help them. But the most obvious questions they are missing is the WIIFM question. What’s In It For Me?

WIIFM is the stuff that shows how or why what you have to sell or say matters to those who you are trying to sell or say it too. It’s the value proposition, the thing that makes them realize that what you’re offering is worth their money or their time.

Georgia National Fair in Perry, Georgia on Saturday, October 6, 2018. [X-E2, XF55-200mm ƒ/3.5-4.8 R LM OIS, ISO 400, ƒ/4.8, 1/1700]
I think most people think they have something important and that everyone will want to know.

The latest group of missionaries I worked with thought that churches should see their role as supporting them.

Picturing Justice at the Atlanta Legal Society – Featuring the work of: Dustin Chambers, Melissa Golden, Andrew Lichtenstein, Robin Rayne & Beate Sass [X-E3, XF18-55mm ƒ/2.8-4 R LM OIS, ISO 640, ƒ/3.6, 1/60]
Now in consulting missionaries trying to connect with their supporters back home I had to remind them about WIIFM.

So, never forget that relationship building comes BEFORE favor asking. And there has to be a much bigger and better WIIFM when you approach people cold, without a solid relationship.

Teenager in San Benito, Nicaragua [NIKON D5, 85.0 mm f/1.8, ISO 100, ƒ/1.8, 1/160]
That said, sometimes people will offer favors if they are charmed by you, or like you, or are just in a good mood. But given how overwhelmed most people are these days, they usually appreciate and respond well to clear propositions with a straightforward action attached—and a benefit. Otherwise, you just become part of the noise.

For the journalist WIIFM is the stuff that shows how or why what you have to say matters to those who you are trying to say it to.

Storytellers Abroad Multimedia Workshop – Kosovo Leadership Academy (KLA) [X-E2, XF18-55mm ƒ/2.8-4 R LM OIS, ISO 400, ƒ/4, 1/105]

Leave a Reply