Everything can be conversation worthy

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The business world is full with boring stuff. Don’t you agree?

So often, companies really try their utmost best to be boring and very stiff in their communication. This conclusion opens up a world of opportunities to stand out. In my book ‘The Conversation Company‘, I speak about unused conversation potential. Every company has unused conversation potential. The challenge is to open up your eyes and notice the opportunities.

This blog post shares some very creative ideas on how to turn boring things into something conversation worthy.

A website failure can be conversation worthy

Mint.com a fantastic tool. It offers personal finance advise through on online tool. When customers want to log on and the site is down, they see this page. It’s not your typical ‘Error 400 Page not found’ view. It does not make people angry, but it makes them smile. Further, they offer their customers some alternative pages where they can surf to in the meanwhile..

In a recent post on Hubspot, they shared 10 case of conversation worthy error pages. Most companies don’t think of it, but when you see it, it’s so obvious to do it this way.


An airline safety movie can be conversation worthy

Frequent flyers don’t watch safety video’s on board of airplanes no longer. They are boring and you know the story by heart. Well, the safety video of Air New Zealand is just too good not to watch it. Or, how to make something very boring, very conversation worthy.The more than 8 million views, proof my point.

An insurance app can beconversation worthy

Nothing more boring than insurances? Well, Allianz shows the world that this is not always the case. They connected their life insurance with Nike+. Consumer with a nice track record on Nike+ pay less than people who are not into sports. Check the video to see the details.

Allianz – Run For Your Life from Max Gebhardt on Vimeo.


An out-of-office email can be conversation worthy

Most out-of-the-office messages sound like this:

‘Dear, I am on a business trip until next Monday. I have limited access to my mails. If urgent, call someone else from my team.’

As boring as can be.

I found a more conversation worthy alternative that sounds like this:

“I am currently out of the office on vacation.I know I’m supposed to say that I’ll have limited access to email and won’t be able to respond until I return – but that’s not true. My blackberry will be with me and I can respond if I need to. And I recognize that I’ll probably need to interrupt my vacation from time to time to deal with something urgent.

That said, I promised my wife that I am going to try to disconnect, get away and enjoy our vacation as much as possible. So, I’m going to experiment with something new. I’m going to leave the decision in your hands:

  • If your email truly is urgent and you need a response while I’m on vacation, please resend it to interruptyourvacation@[redacted].comand I’ll try to respond to it promptly.
  • If you think someone else at [the company]might be able to help you, feel free to email my assistant, and she’ll tryto point you in the right direction.

· Otherwise, I’ll respond when I return…

Warm regardsâ€

In fact, OOO-messages are a perfect channel to update people about your latest content, your latest achievements or your latest most embarrassing story. Let’s make a promise to never write a boring OOO-message again.

A reaction on Twitter can be conversation worthy

More and more companies are helping clients with their questions on Twitter. This is of course a fantastic evolution. But in all honesty, most answers are pretty boring as well. And of course, it is impossible to make all reply’s conversation worthy, but let’s look for opportunities where we can make the difference. The best example this year was a tweet from Barrack Obama during his election campaign.After Clint Eastwood had a virtual interview with an empty chair (predending President Obama was in that chair)during a Republican conference, the campaign team of Obama replied with a tweet that said ‘The seat is taken’.

Do you see other examples, cases, situations?

It would be great if you could add some cases of conversation worthy situations, preferably of situations that are normally very boring and not conversation worthy at all. Thank you!