How To Use the Power of Storytelling to Boost Sales and Revenue
Human beings have always been aware of the power of storytelling. Before we could write, we spoke our stories aloud, and before we could talk, we told stories through paintings. Storytelling is a communication tool that we use to evoke emotions, form connections with others, and pass on information in a memorable way.
As an entrepreneur, your ability to build a story around your brand is one of the key factors that will help your business stand out from the crowd.
The power of storytelling
“Marketing is no longer about the stuff that you make, but about the stories that you tell.” – Seth Godin, Author and Marketing Strategist
As Jude Charles (the founder and CEO of Jude Charles Co., a full-service video production company) explains in this episode, the power of storytelling in a business setting lies in the way it can help you connect with your target audience. Understanding the data is important for the behind-the-scenes running of a business, but your customers aren’t nearly as interested in the numbers as they are in the deeper meaning behind them.
Let’s use the world-renowned Airbnb as an example of a company that is utilizing the power of storytelling to enhance its brand. The role of a company is to solve a particular problem for its customers, and through its “Host Stories” platform, Airbnb has given the people they are serving a place to share their stories about how the platform has changed their lives. What a brilliant marketing strategy!
The business world is a competitive one, and if your brand story makes a lasting impression on someone, they are much more likely to choose your product or service over your competitors.
How to tell a powerful story
“Stories emotionalize information” – Tony Robbins, Life and Business Strategist
A story is only powerful if it is told well. According to Peter Guber, the CEO of Mandalay Entertainment, there are three keys to successful storytelling:
- Connect to emotion: Our most vivid memories are usually attached to some type of emotion. Therefore, by telling a story that evokes emotions in someone, you are increasing the chances that they will remember what you have told them.
- Be authentic: Don’t tell stories to manipulate people into buying your product or service. More often than not, people know when they are being taken advantage of, and if you get a reputation for that, you’re not likely to come back from it very easily. Tell stories with the intention of showing your audience how you can serve them, not the other way around.
- Know when to stop: The point of storytelling is to connect with your audience, so if you feel like your message isn’t resonating with them, change your approach!
In addition, powerful storytelling requires that you have clarity around the vision and mission of your brand so that your message is clear and consistent. It is also important that you know exactly who your target audience is and that you ensure that your content is curated specifically for them. And finally, keep it simple! If your messaging becomes too complicated, you’ll lose the attention of your audience.
Boosting your business through storytelling
“Leave no doubt in people’s minds what your story is and how they play a part in it. Remember, it’s not about getting people to join you, it’s about using your story to join the customer’s life.” – Stephen Geick, Growth Advisor
When it comes to brand-related storytelling, there are six different types of stories that you can tell, and countless different ways in which you can tell them. The six main types of storytelling in a business context are:
- The story of the people you are serving through your business
- The origin story of your company
- The story of discovery (if your business is based on a novel invention)
- The story of success
- The story of the values that form the foundation of your company
- The story of the lessons learned through the founding and running of your business
As a business owner, you can tell these stories on social media, in advertising copy, and during sales meetings or meetings with funders. You can write them down or speak them aloud. Whichever way you choose to deliver your story, if you do it passionately, confidently, and honestly, you will see a positive impact on your sales and revenue!