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The Importance Of Storytelling

Today I am going to talk to you about stories and the importance of telling your story if you want to engage prospective clients in your product or service. This has been inspired by a LinkedIn post I saw this morning where someone shared how they got to be in the position they are in today. 

Why Stories?

Since time began we have been telling stories.  The first caveman will have learned that sitting in the sun all day gave a pleasant warm feeling but the after effects (or sunburn) were not so pleasant so would have shared his experiences as a warning to the rest of his tribe.  Early cave drawings were stories and instruction manuals and recollections of their daily lives. 

That may all be well and good for then but what about now? Well think about it, all faith groups preach or share stories, mostly written down many many years ago, these are still shared today.  We teach our children with stories too, nursery rhymes are stories, when we start to teach kids to count we may sing the song, “1,2,3,4,5, once I caught a fish alive….” etc these are all stories.

 

 

The reason stories are so powerful is that as human beings be are all universally “wired” the same way to understand stories.  The left brain interpreter refers to that part of the brain which helps us make sense of the world we are in. It tries to rationalise information and see how that relates to the past the present, putting things in a beginning middle and end, a sort of an indexing system for our brains I guess. Without this our brains would be filled with a random recollection of events with no sense of why or cause and effect.

Stories don’t just help us make sense of things they help us connect.  You’ve seen those studies that map the brain well, when someone tells you a story your brain activates the same parts as in the storytellers brain so you synchronise with each other.  This sounds fanciful but put another way this is empathy, us feeling the joy or fear or anxiety that the storyteller is conveying to us.

 

 

When we look to create video content (like the TN Robinson example above) we approach the project in the same way.  This isn’t just about your product but client testimonials and case studies work in the same way. The story needs to have a beginning, middle and end. In the example below the beginning of the story highlights the situation, a change in service which needs to be communicated. In the middle the solution was identified and is backed up by reasoning, there is jeopardy in the fact things didn’t go to plan but relief when a solution was found. The end of the story is recommending a course of action. This is all wrapped up in 90 seconds.

If you, like many others are being directly affected by the current coronavirus crisis then why not use some time to share how that’s impacting you.  Whether you’re busier or if your business has has to strip back due to a downturn. Share your story so clients and customers can understand. Not all of our stories will have a happy ending but regardless of the outcome we can learn from them and empathise.  

If you haven’t seen it yet, now is a good time to view the video that accompanies this post here. If you’re considering starting your video journey and filming yourself then this post will be useful. If however, you’re stuck and you need a chat then get in touch, I’d be happy to help.  Everyone loves a good story so let us help you share yours!

Bye for now,

Mark