I’ve been helping a good cause (that helps protect the environment) this week – and I urge them that as well as working hard to get their “work” done – they also must invest time and effort to let supporters and potential supporters KNOW of some progress and good news.
But it’s a fine line – you don’t want people to think that things are so good – there’s no problem any more.
I learn lots of lessons from how Bono balances good news and encouragement with the need to do more.
I know some people find him annoying. I think he’s a smart operator who understands the hard realities of good causes getting support and getting things done.
I study how he does it and I share his techniques with the good causes I help – pro bono of course!
For example, I recently studied via Youtube – an appearance on David Letterman late 2013.
As well as helping good causes (pro Bono) I do lots of work in the corporate world.
I see that many successful and profitable corporations like to be associated with good causes – yet, from my experience, these for-profit businesses want to see some progress.
The brutal truth is that when causes seek corporate support – they have a much better chance of getting it if they can show there will be progress – and some good news.
Maybe some profitable corporations will help out no matter what – but I mainly see corporations like to be connected with good causes that achieve some success – success in achieving results.
Some victories (even if small) in a campaign.
Bono will strategically go around to the media to tell the world of some good news.
I’m sure in the “negotiations” with media – he will agree to talk about some other things – but it seems to me that HIS main motivation is to spread some good news. He does his normal charming little Irishman with funny anecdotes “performance” in exchange for sharing the good news.
And he’s very good at the funny little stories – like Bono meets Bono in this Letterman interview.
Now in the Letterman interview at around 7:15 after he tells some amusing anecdotes – he moves into the good news
“It’s great to be the bearer of some good news in all this bad news”
In other interviews, I’ve seen how Bono gives some encouraging news and yet also stresses the need for continued action.
I’m paraphrasing – but the basic message sticks in my head:
We’re not here for a victory lap – we’ve got to pick up the pace (keep the foot on the accelerator)
You have to balance the good news of progress with a reminder of the peril if you don’t keep up your efforts.
You must address – both Progress + Peril.
What’s been achieved + what still must be done!
I sometimes get some pushback from good causes I help.
I hear “objections/concerns” like:
But I’m not Bono. I’m not confident like Bono. I’m not interesting to the media like Bono.
I don’t have the media connections.
I don’t have the luxury of time to go around to the media.
I give them some “tough love”!
1. You don’t have to be as good as Bono. But learn how to give the media what they want – in short sharp and colourful examples. Practice until you get good. I’ll help you. If you’ll put in the effort – I’ll put in the effort!
2. Develop media contacts.
3. Make the time to spread some good news. Get serious about it.
Now this interview is from late 2013 – and politically things have changed – but I encourage you to:
1. be aware of the amusing anecdotes – Bono and Letterman work well together – not ruining a story ending!
2. Study how he delivers the good news
3. Study how he makes the audience feel good about how their efforts are making a difference. (in this case the first audience is American Letterman viewers). Bono seems careful to not let it be ALL praise for the US – but he does give the audience something to feel good and proud about.
Here’s a link to the video:
So What is Pro Bono Bono?
In a nutshell:
1. A dedicated Bono/U2 fan who loves to help organisations with pro bono (for good/for free) communication/positive persuasion tips
2. Communication coaching for good causes – combining professional skills with passions
Communication Coaching + Pro bono helping good causes + Bono’s inspiration and example = Pro Bono Bono
You’ll learn how to improve the way you Present and Persuade by using communication techniques effectively used by Bono.
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