You may not have grown up in a storytelling family, and you may not be that person who is the life of the party with tales of adventure or hilarity, but you still have the capacity to move your audience with your words.
Storytelling is a vital part of marketing. As humans, stories are part of our DNA. Every culture has a history of rich storytelling. Before the written word, stories were told in pictures as well as verbally.
While your storytelling muscle may be atrophied, but it’s there. And it will grow stronger with use.
If you’ve ever worked in retail, you’ve probably had the experience of talking to a customer about a service or product and told a story to relate how this product or service can improve their life in some way. A compelling story can move people to action.
Following are some guidelines to help you tell a great story:
- All great novels start out with an introduction to the main characters in their ordinary world. Introduce yourself as that Protagonist in your mundane/stressful/failing/time-poverty life.
- Just like the Hero in Joseph Campbell’s The Hero With A Thousand Faces, you are first called to adventure. (What was the spark that first nudged you toward entrepreneurship?)
- Perhaps our Hero (you) was reluctant at first and ignored the call? (Did a mentor of some other circumstance encourage you to break with the status quo and enter the unfamiliar jungle of entrepreneurship?)
- That moment when Hero steps into a new World. (entrepreneurship/business owner/own boss)
- There are always antagonists in a great story: circumstances that test our Hero, Allies who come to his aid, enemies that seem to appear around every turn trying to thwart his efforts. (What have been some of your greatest challenges?)
- Hero endures and grabs the precious Elixir of Freedom Living (Highlight some of the successes and milestones of your new business)
- Now there are new challenges, ordeals, obstacles as Hero struggles to take this Prize. (What are some things you struggle with today?)
- Hero returns from the Great Adventure with fresh insights and knowledge. (What have you learned from your experiences that have made you a better person/business person, helped your business, or improved your life?)
- Open-Ended: Like Rocky Balboa, there is a sequel. Talk about what’s next. ( Where will you take your business in the next 3 to 5 years? What are your new goals?)
I hope this guide helps you get a start on writing your story.
If you’re like me, you may feel like you don’t really have a story. But trust that you do. You have everything that you need right now. Trust the process and trust yourself.
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