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The Art of Explanation: Making your Ideas, Products, and Services Easier to Understand by Lee LeFever

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Chapter 15

Right Medium for the Message

UnFigure

Have you ever wondered about the lack of cooking shows on the radio? They exist, but are few for a very simple reason: this medium is not the best fit for the message. Radio is an auditory medium and cooking is best when it's visual, or even better, live. This mismatch highlights a crucial idea: medium matters.

One of the keys to getting the most out of an explanation is being deliberate about the media in which you choose to present it. It's easy to fall back on sending an e-mail or creating a PowerPoint presentation with bullet points—and who knows, it might be effective. But looking at all of our media options allows us to move beyond something that simply works and instead formulate explanations that are remarkable and sharable.

Explanations, by definition, are meant for sharing. In isolation, they wither and die. This chapter is devoted to giving your explanations an opportunity to flourish and potentially, live forever.

A Transformation

As we discussed earlier, explanations often enter the world in the form of text. After planning and packaging ideas, we write an explanation to capture the major points. These written explanations are much like a screenplay for a movie or the Common Craft video scripts we've included in previous chapters. The written word is a simple and accessible way for us to explain an idea and communicate it to others. ...

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