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About Vickie Sullivan

Vickie Sullivan is internationally recognized as the top market strategist for thought leaders, professional speakers and B2B professional service firms. Specializing in brand and message strategies in crowded markets, she has helped thousands of talented people outsmart their competition since 1987.

Written by: Vickie Sullivan  |  March 14, 2013

Watch Your Labels

What you call yourself can be the difference between bypassing the bureaucracy and getting lost in the shuffle.  A drastic example:  a memorandum from the Department of Defense regarding travel and conference expenses.   Included is a list of entertainment-related expenses that are expressly forbidden.  Who’s first on this list?  Motivational speakers.  That’s right…the label many speakers use on their websites and speaker’s bureau categories.

Does this mean the Feds are not using any speakers at their events?  Nope — specific subject matter experts are just fine, thank you very much.  Question:  how many of us call ourselves subject matter experts?

Think this is just a one-agency issue?  Think again.  DoD was just implementing the requirements from OMB (Office of Management and Budget) earlier last year.  The moral of the story:  sometimes the sexier label isn’t the best label.  Pay attention to your market segment and position accordingly.


About Vickie Sullivan

Vickie Sullivan is internationally recognized as the top market strategist for thought leaders, professional speakers and B2B professional service firms. Specializing in brand and message strategies in crowded markets, she has helped thousands of talented people outsmart their competition since 1987.