STEAK: The messaging framework for every contractor} and product

Over more than 18 years of advising founders, I’ve noticed all kinds of stories — good, destructive and everything in between. While everyone is different, I’ve noticed that the very best stories accept something in common: They pass its RIBS test. I’ve talked a lot about this over the years, and it’s stood the test of time and trends.

The test is designed to tell you if your memory is memorable (will it “stick to your ribs? ”) so you can turn it into a compelling message. It looks this type of thing:

  • 3rd there’s r elevant
  • I nevitable
  • B elievable
  • S imple


Before you can come up with a good account, you need to think about the audience. Who are person trying to reach? Are you solving a challange they care about? What matters to them about that problem? Why does your solution will get attention?

The test is designed to tell you whether a story is memorable (will this task “stick to your ribs? ”) you are able to turn it into a compelling message.

Marc Benioff could have launched Salesforce by explaining it as an online way for companies to handle relationships with their customers. It’s actual and it would have been interesting, at the very least to some people. But instead, Marc resolved to go bigger: He ran a venture that described Salesforce as the “end of software. ”

During, software was everywhere and it was regarded as creating all kinds of problems: It was enormously expensive, time consuming and prone to fiasco. By taking on those issues, Marc made the company instantly more highly relevant to a bigger market and audience. The most important conversation went from a discussion of promote checklists, contacts and leads, within how an entire industry would replace. Marc looked like a visionary — and Salesforce seemed revolutionary.


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