So what is your story?

So what is your story?

Whats your storyThe greatest secret weapon in every business arsenal is their story – something that will grab the attention of a potential customers and connect them emotionally with their brand. Get it right and it will pay dividends 10 fold but get it wrong……

The world of communications has changed dramatically. People are facing an ever increasing shortage of time and expanding range of sources, from blogs to LinkedIn to Twitter to websites and not forgetting newspapers, television and radio – the list is endless.

Technology has enabled us to control what we see, hear and do more than we ever dreamed possible. The average person is exposed to thousands of subliminal messages every single day of their life. So why should they listen to your story?

The one thing that has stood the test of time is storytelling – it is both a powerful and necessary way of communicating. Stories can be illustrative, memorable and allow individuals to create stronger emotional bonds with their listeners.

Storytelling as it applies to business is not about spinning a yarn, it’s about why your brand, products or services exist in the world and why it is needed. It’s about who you are, what you do and how you can answer their needs, provide a solution to their problems, make a difference and add value into their lives.

For a story to be memorable it must be made easy for the listener to connect with on a personal and emotional level.

Take a leaf from Aristotle, the ancient Greek philosopher and one of the founding fathers of communication theory. He preached that persuasion occurs when three components are aligned: Ethos, Logos, and Pathos:

  • Ethos is credibility or authority. We tend to agree with people whom we respect for their achievements, title, experience, in other words their reputation.
  • Logos is the means of persuasion through logic, data, and statistics.
  • Pathos is the ability to appeal to the listeners emotions.

Bottom line you simply cannot persuade through data and facts alone you need to add some emotion and personality to the mix.

Storytellers inspires listeners and persuades them to take action and in business that action could mean wanting to find out more about your company or your products and for the listener to make a buying decision.

The golden rules of business communications is for the content to be of interest to the listener, and that could be by creating some sort of pain which will connect them with their current situation and for the content to be ‘sticky in their mind’. It is critical that they remember what you have said and that a ‘seed’ has been firmly planted in their brain – but never sell to them as no one wants to buy anything, they only want what it will do for them to make their lives easier and better in the future.

The art of storytelling or as we now call communications has never been stronger – so what is your story?

About the author

Howard Kent: Kent Consulting Ireland are a Marketing & Business Growth consultancy providing Business Coaching & Mentoring to SME Business Owners

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