Brevity matters

"I would have written you a shorter letter but I didn't have the time."

This quote, often attributed to Mark Twain, hints at the tough time we have telling our stories succinctly. If being economical with words was seen as a virtue in the late 1800s, it should be considered an absolute must-have today.

Your company's stories are up against an unprecedented amount of competing information. Whether you're writing marketing materials, doing a media interview or giving a speech - brevity matters. The shorter and more powerful your message, the more likely your audience will be to remember it. The problem with brevity is that it takes time and effort.

So when you're penning your next presentation, prepping for your next media interview or rewriting your company's the part of the ruthless editor. Omit what isn't truly important. Take your best content and hone it to a fine edge. Your audience will appreciate it.

If you need some inspiration when it comes to keeping things to-the-point, just channel your inner Hemingway. It's said that Ernest Hemingway's friends once bet the author he couldn't write a complete story using just six words. On a napkin, Hemingway wrote the following:

 "For sale: baby shoes, never worn."

As the legend goes, he collected on the bet.