Telling a Story = Smart Marketing

boy and girl with bookPeople are storytelling creatures. Who doesn’t remember a story from childhood that stood the test of time? It may have been written, it may have been told, it may have been a formal “story” or it may have been a recounting of events that happened to you or to someone else. When families and friends get together, telling stories about the past builds relationships as we look back on shared experiences, shapes our memories of what actually happened, and can get people in a similar emotional groove.

Sharing information in the form of a story also makes it more memorable and gives us the freedom to make sense of how the information relates to our lives (or not). Religions and teaching traditions have used stories for centuries for just that reason.

When it comes to marketing your business on the Web, memorable matters and you want people to tell others about you too. Listing a ton of facts on your website will not create the same response in your reader that a story will. If you want readers to remember what you’re selling, tell their friends, family, or colleagues, and understand how they would benefit from your products or services—package key facts in the form of a story they can relate to.

If you tell me a story involving one of your clients, or representing the types of clients you work with, I can imagine myself as a part of that group—or not. If you tell me some different stories then maybe I see myself in one and not the other, or I may think I fit in the spaces between. Either way, I have an idea about how I might benefit from your work—I’m going to remember the feeling of fit whenever I remember the story and when I think about the type of product or service you provide. Now that you’ve made things personal by giving me information in a package I can relate to and share with others, you become more memorable as well.

Facts in a package people can relate to are more memorable, and facts in a simple story are easy to pass along.

5 tips for your marketing stories on the Web:

  • Keep it simple—focus on whatever is most important for you to get across
  • Keep it short—much easier if you only have one main topic per story
  • People it—make sure your story has characters
  • Write it well—make it easy to read and easy to understand
  • Create an emotional connection with your reader—and then back off and let them come to their own conclusions.