The Art of Storytelling
The Art of Storytelling: A Powerful Marketing Tactic?
Whether you want to touch a nerve, reach a new audience, or boost your sales, storytelling is the most powerful tool in your arsenal. As humans, we love a good story, and when it resonates with us, it can drive us to take action when nothing else can.
Think about it. Which would you rather read, an interesting story, or a sales letter? Which are you more likely to remember a week from now, a compelling story, or a features and benefits comparison? And which are you more likely to buy, a story you can see yourself in, or a product that does x, y, and z?
If you think back on your most recent purchases, from the business coach you hired to the car you bought last summer, chances are you’ll find a story that resonated with you, and that drove your decision to purchase.
Stories About You
You’ve heard it time and time again: People buy from those they know, like, and trust. And part of getting to know you is hearing your stories. Your potential clients want to know how you came to be in business, what experiences you’ve had that drove your decisions, what lessons you learned along the way.
Your stories don’t have to be directly related to business to be powerful, either. That anecdote about the time you nearly got arrested for not having a valid driver’s license is the perfect lead in to a blog post about better record keeping. Or the story about how you accidentally seated two warring families together at your wedding reception? It’s just what you need to drive home a point about relationship building.
Stories About Your Clients
Otherwise known as social proof, stories about your clients are incredibly useful in your marketing and branding strategy. Testimonials, white papers, case studies and the like are all just stories, after all, and they showcase how you and your products have changed a life or a business for the better.
Stories About Your Products
Yes, even your products have stories to tell. Why did you decide to create that new coaching program? What will it help your clients achieve? Who is it not suited to? These stories and more can show your potential clients more about your products and services than any sales page ever will. When you openly share your thought processes as you were creating your program, buyers will instantly know if it’s a product that will work for them or not.
Clearly, stories have a lot of power when it comes to branding and marketing, but you have to use caution. Beware of the awkward insertion of a story just because you’ve heard it’s good for your marketing. If you find yourself midway through a blog post and you write something like, “but anyway, enough of that, let’s get on with business” and then making a total shift to a completely different subject, chances are the story isn’t working.
But if you can tie your story in naturally to what follows, that’s your golden ticket to better branding, more sales, and a more profitable business. We love stories. Don’t be afraid to tell yours.
In fact, share one right now in the comments below. What is a story that tells us about who you are?
Creating a memorable brand requires us to be authentic, vulnerable and transparent. The easiest way to do that is by telling stories. If you are curious to learn more about how you can incorporate more storytelling into your business and how this ties in to your overall marketing strategy, schedule a free 30-minute “Transform my Brand from Bland to Brilliant” Strategy Session with me. In this 30-minute conversation, you will quickly discover what your biggest brand challenge is, what you want to create instead and exactly what action step you need to take next to make it happen. Just click here to fill out a few simple questions. I guarantee that you will walk away feeling lighter, more connected to your business and excited about what’s next for you!
Minette, I love this article. The power of storytelling is a catalyst to connect with people in a profound way. Connecting to people’s hearts through stories with humor and authenticity seems to be growing in popularity, and I am a big fan!
Minette–GREAT points about the power of the story. This last year has found me connecting with pieces of my own story in new ways. As I’ve been speaking and writing about this, I’ve seen how deeply rooted my work is with the changes I’ve lived. Laurie
I really appreciated this article. This rings very true with me. The picture caught my eye – it makes you wonder what is the story behind it. Thanks very much for this!
Minette, this is it! All one needs to know when sitting down to share in a deep way through her writing. When I melted my resistance to transparency and authenticity in my marketing, everything changed. My practice is filled with the kinds of clients I am meant to serve.
Beautifully put together, and useful, thanks!
‘Creating a memorable brand requires us to be authentic, vulnerable and transparent. The easiest way to do that is by telling stories’ Wow great words Minette. In my psychology practice my business is to really listen to people tell their story in a safe and trusting environment and support them to re-story for recovery, healing and leading a radiant life of freedom, peace, calm and joy.
I didn’t really think about having a ‘story’ to tell because it wasn’t ‘extraordinary’. After telling a few people about things that occurred in my life they said “That’s your story.” To me, it was just getting by. We need to acknowledge more of what we have gone through that may resonate with others.
I think there is a growing appreciate for the power of storytelling. As much as social media and content marketing are effective communication mediums, stories help brands establish real and deep connections with consumers by creating immersive experiences that go beyond product. To help entrepreneurs embrace the power of storytelling, I just published a new book, Storytelling for Startups – http://www.storytellingforstartups.ca.
There you go again, encouraging the whole person to come to the table for business and marketing. Thank you!