I have always enjoyed the USA Today feature which provides the list of best-selling books and a succinct summary of them.  By succinct, I mean a few words, not even the Cliff Notes of the Cliff Notes.  

For example:

To Kill a Mockingbird/Harper Lee (#12) “1960 coming-of-age classic about racism”

A Walk in the Woods/Bill Bryson (#21) “An attempt to hike the 2,100-mile Appalachian Trail”

StrengthsFinder 2.0/Tom Rath (#37) “Lifetime strategies for using your talents”

I have always admired the person who boils down 200 pages to its essence. I’ll bet that the person excels at writing tweets too.

Think about how you can use the USA Today book list or Twitter as a measuring gauge for your message. Can you summarize your value proposition in a precise way that would fit the limitations of these media?  Does the reader of your proposal know exactly what action you want them to take?  Is your staff clear on what you value?

While pages and paragraphs have their place to convey wonderful prose, getting to the point has its virtues as well.  Don’t let your message get lost in the words.

— beth triplett

Source:  USA Today Best-Selling Books, booklist.usatoday.com, September 17, 2015, p. 4D

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