Try a triad
You could lead your corporate profile with all the blah-de-blah about your mission, vision, values and inception.
Or you could start with a compression of details that gives readers a taste of your company, like this lead for a story about a division of Seaboard Corp.:
Call it compression of details. That’s where you squeeze together a series of details — usually three — into a single sentence or paragraph.
It’s a great way to show instead of tell. So tap the power of threes: Try a triad.
1. Honor employee award winners.
Employee awards announcements are too often missed opportunities. Instead of exploring the fantastic things employees did to win the awards, communicators make it an announcement and a list.
Instead, use compression of details to show how your winners earned their awards:
Five employees exceeded expectations and actively pursued excellence to earn the first Sprint Values Excellence Annual Distinguished Contribution Award at NIS.
We present our annual recognition award to employees who have helped us realize Sprint’s goals and vision. Here are some highlights of their achievements …
2. Build a scene from details.
In this passage, Pulitzer Prize-winning critic Jonathan Gold uses the power of three to sketch a quick picture of the scene at a restaurant:
3. Brighten your lead with details.
Got details? Move them to the top. They’re so powerful, they draw readers into the piece.
For this rewrite, my client had already listed the languages in the original story. So why not use them to brighten the lead instead? Here’s the original:
And here’s the rewrite:
In fact, XYZ radio users can now choose from 28 languages for their XYZ.1, XYZ.2 and XYZ.3 handsets. Each radio can include up to three languages.
Show, don’t just tell.
Compression of details is among the more than 6 types of concrete material to try.
One way to get more detail into your piece: Try a triad, or tap the magic of threes.
How could you use compression of details to sell your points?
What questions do you have about compression of details?