Nail your proposition: Lessons from book titles

More Thinking


The Huffington Post had a fantastic photo montage recently. A book blogger, Dan Wilbur, took a series of famous children’s books and created new titles that summarised the plots. The results are brilliant.

  • Charlie and the Chocolate Factory became A Bunch of Kids Visit the Kid-Torturing Factory.
  • A Christmas Carol became Rich People Deserve Second Chances.
  • The Very Hungry Caterpillar became Eat Until You Feel Pretty.

Have a look – there are about 20 and I guarantee you’ll chuckle at a few.

In some cases the books Wilbur renames are hundreds of pages, but he manages to give you the essence in a nutshell – in an engaging way. These strike a chord because Wilbur has a true talent for filtering out the fluff and nailing the bottom line. And that is exactly what your business’s proposition has to do.

Your business has a complex story – a history, a product/service range and employees. But to engage strangers you need to distil all that down into a compelling and concise proposition that will attract them into finding out more.

This involves looking beyond what you are. You have to look at why do you do what you do and how do you do it. Once you do this you can drill down to what is truly exceptional about your business, and why potential customers should care.

Then try saying it ten words or fewer.

Essential rules for killer B2B content


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