Authentic Stories Lead to Better Sales
I was listening to the Accidental Creative podcast during yesterday’s commute, and heard a fascinating dialog about the power of storytelling. In the podcast, Lisa Johnson revealed her research on how our brains interpret stories.
“We see the world through the lens of story, and research shows that when our brain notices story elements, we pay more attention,” she said.”That, for me, was a wake-up call.”
Lisa listed several tips for telling better stories, both in business and in life:
• Show a before-and-after story that involves a change of conditions.
• Have a single main character.
• Share an unfulfilled desire that your audience can relate to.
This led to a discussion of how stories can work for or against your marketing efforts. “Sometimes I think there is a tendency on the part of people who are making things or marketing things to want to manipulate those points of resonance,” Todd Henry said, “but without an authentic message, I think it can work against you.”
Lisa agreed: “If you’re trying to promote a product, look for true stories. Not some composite that you create and manufacture.”
That was the key takeaway for me. Most people already know that storytelling can lead to better sales. But authenticity is the magic ingredient that makes those stories work.
The podcast is under 20 minutes long and has a bunch of great marketing takeaways, so check out the Accidental Creative and give it a listen. Lisa Johnson also has a free ebook on this topic called Story Juicing.