📢 Loud or potent?

In one of his annual essays, Jeremey Bullmore writes about high potency insights. It’s not enough to name something (insight) but also to communicate it in a way that sticks (potency). This explanation, for example, is low potency. Here’s Bullmore:

Here is an Insight: “Product satisfaction arises less from inherent construction and performance than from consumers’ internalised perceptions of personal utility.”

Do we get that? What about:

People don't want quarter-inch drills, they want quarter-inch holes.

We get that.

Like reading a cake recipe, this makes sense, but taking the recipe to the pan requires more work. Our modern challenge is to two fold: sort through the noise and communicate through the noise.

One technique is loudness. As people, we tend to think that frequent, vociferous, and noisy is important. It can be, but it’s not always. True potency is quiet. It’s like a secret. We whisper it and the listener’s eyes spring wider. Though it takes more work, it’s the work worth taking on.