Express your personality, humanize your messaging, and win over your dream customers.
Everyone loves a good story. Most of us start hearing bedtime stories before we take our first baby steps through life; inherently, we crave them.
Stories pull at people’s heartstrings. Stories ignite conversations, they are shared and they are remembered.
Stories always have a purpose: to make people laugh, cry, sometimes ugly cry. To spark curiosity, educate, make people ponder, or inspire movement. A powerful story will have insightful lessons or motivating elements that drive people to take real-life action. This is the key to “story-selling”.
Think about your favorite book or movie … how often do you refer to those characters or heroes in real life situations? I’m a little obsessed with the Hunger Games and at least a couple times a month I think, what would Katniss Everdeen do? Seriously, I make decisions that way — no shame.
Before I share all the reasons why storytelling is important for the life and soul of your business, here is one of my favorite messages from one of everyone’s favorite stories, Game of Thrones:
“What unites people? … Armies? Gold? Flags?… Stories. There is nothing more powerful in the world than a good story. Nothing can stop it. No enemy can defeat it” ~Tyrion Lannister
Stories trump all, true story.
If you want to market your brand with a unique voice that drives people to take action, you need to start storytelling, which I call story-selling. You can use your unique brand story to lead your dream customers through one of my other terms, the plot to purchase.
Here are the ways you can make more sales through storytelling:
First and foremost, people love people. When you tell your personal Founders story you can truly connect with your potential buyers.
Think about all those influencers blowing up on social media posting short stories all the time. Those influencers receive engagement back, “I can totally relate!”, “I needed to hear this from you today”, or “so happy you experience that too”. When these influencers know how to get all their engaged fans from social to their email list they can sell anything and everything. You know why? They have formed a true emotional human connection, and they have built their trust.
As a business owner, you are an influencer. You are the influencer in your customers eyes.
If you run a services business your personal story is extremely important because your future clients are signing up to work with you directly. They are investing in you. They need to believe in you and your passion.
If you’re trying to raise funding those investors need to believe in YOU and your cause — what is your why? What motivates you every day? What inspires you to keep persevering? What moment or obstacle brought your company to life?
An idea can be amazing and revolutionary in concept, but that idea will go nowhere without the grit, perseverance, and drive within the leader. A brand simply will not come to life and make an impact without the right person leading the way. That’s a fact.
Most importantly, when you tell your own story you should feel empowered to talk about the crazy challenges you have been through. Get comfortable with flaunting your failures. What sh*tty things did you overcome that led you to build your business? How did you lose yourself and find yourself again?
How did you get knocked the f* down and get back up again? (cue that Chumbawamba percussion). Who are the villains you had to face head-on? Who are the people that turned you into a villain and made you doubt yourself?
How did you turn pain into power and fear into courage?
Feel free to be super vulnerable and get real because authenticity brings the money $$$. Bring out your inner superhero and start your fan club. Your cheering fans will buy from you.
Important note: your unique story should never be made-up, sugarcoated, nor predictable. Although I do love a good rom-com, I can always guess the end and the story never sticks with me.
Through storytelling, your brand comes to life with a unique personality, and in turn, people want to get friendly with your brand.
It’s not all about you. It’s about your product and/or service and how you bring your entire brand to life. How does your brand emotionally connect with potential buyers? How does your brand earn your buyers trust?
When you humanize your brand, you can better relate to your customers. How do you want people to describe your company? Start telling that story.
Think of it this way, If your brand were a human would he/she be the spunky life of the party everyone wants to talk to? Or would he/she be a nerdy trusted advisor with the most intelligent information to offer?
Build your brand’s personality alongside your own. You are a power couple and your chemistry together should not be denied.
Through stories, you bring your mission and values to life in a humanizing way, which makes your purpose more relatable to your buyers.
There is something a bit boring and too in-your-face when a company simply declares “Our Mission” on their homepage in a few short sentences. Where is the fun storyline in that?
Humans are wired for stories – it’s science. Stories keep us engaged, especially when there is suspense, conflict, and a hero couple that saves the day (that’s you and your brand). We remember stories, not short stale statements.
By telling a powerful story you can paint a picture of where you fit into your buyers lives and what you believe in. Why are you building what you are building for them? How will it make their lives easier and make them happier? You can tell these stories through video, social, blogging, and your webpage.
If you are building a technology company try to minimize the complex jargon and simplify your messaging. Pretend like you are out to lunch with a friend, or even better, a 4th grader.
Tell the powerful concise benefit story instead of product dumping all the complex technical details. Save the tech-talk for the whitepapers.
A real life story will bring your audience to the “ah-hah” moment where they grasp where you bring value into their lives. This “ah-hah” moment is when your soon-to-be buyers start to feel an emotional connection that leads to taking action.
You can market yourself with more purpose and passion across all channels. Connect all those plot dots on the plot to purchase.
You need to find your avatars and tell the story they need to hear, the one they crave, the one that will leave them wanting more. Stories get people’s attention and when told the right way, they hook people.
Tell a short suspenseful story on social media that leads them to the next chapter on your website. Once they reach your website, the story continues when they can easily opt in to read more.
Once you get subscribers or opt-ins, send them thoughtful email stories to continue the narrative. Your story becomes part of their life and top-of-mind.
Storytelling is critical in building a sales funnel that actually works because buyers need to feel the emotional gratification.
No one buys anything without emotional motivation, and most people make a purchase because they want emotional gratification. Think about the last time you made a big purchase. How did you feel? Confident? Relieved? Young and beautiful? Fearless? On top of the world? Stories allow you to drive this emotional motivation that leads the buyer to reach a highly desired feeling.
Once you win over that dream customer and make that sale, make sure your marketing content is easily shareable. Stories are shared. The more you share and enable your customers to share, the more people begin to follow your plot to purchase. This is a behavior that doesn’t need to be backed up… it’s just the way we were brought up to be.
Trust the story to make more sales.
I would love for you to read my shortish story here.
I offer the following services for my clients:
–> Storytelling consulting sessions to help you create your unique compelling story and find your true north star.
–> Creative copywriting to tell your story on multiple channels and optimize your sales funnel for conversions.
–> Brand messaging guidebook creation to connect all the plot-dots.
Let’s work together!