CRAM your OctopOSS Messages

“I’ve concluded a great message at its essence packs four complementary purposes into one powerful whole: It connects with other people based on their values (C), rewards (R) them with a benefit they seek, asks for a specific action (A) to get that benefit, and sticks with us in a memorable (M) way.”
Katya Andresen on LinkedIn

When it comes to OSS consultancy, implementation, sales, etc there is a risk of suffering from information overload in our industry. There’s just so much to learn and discuss. Katya’s CRAM mnemonic is a simple guide to get your message through the noise.

C – Connect with what your audience is passionate about (OSS of course), but more specifically what aspects of the OSS do they care most about? Do they specialise in solving problems in the NOC (Network Operation Centre), designing new network topologies, etc?

R – Reward your audience with some form of benefit as a result of listening to your message. Does your message provide a new technique to help them solve their problems, does it simplify the design process?

A – Create a Call to Action for the audience to do something as a result of your message. This could include asking the individual to test certain problem solving scenarios and compare with existing techniques. It is in the call to action (or lack thereof) that a message often loses its potency. Without the reinforcement of the action, your helpful message is quickly drowned out under the next wave of information to hit each audience member.

M – The message has to be Memorable in some way. Katya suggests that it should be “different, catchy, personal, tangible and/or desirable“. It is through being memorable that your message can gain the most power. If your problem solving method tackles the problem from a different perspective and is a tangibly better approach then it is likely to propagate through the NOC. The human brain is more likely to retain information if it is contained in a memorable story. It may be the back-story behind the innovative problem solving technique that reinforces the message in the long-term memories of your audience.

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