By Boli Lau
Who doesn’t love a great story? Getting lost in a novel while on vacation, catching up with your girlfriend on the latest celebrity gossip or sitting at the edge of your seat in the movie theatre as you watch the twisting plot unfold. It’s like being in a trance. Nothing else matters. A great story gets your undivided attention.
Recently, I volunteered for library duty at my daughter’s elementary school. Every week Ms. Nancy brings in her kindergarten class just before recess. Ms. Nancy picks one book and the children sit on the floor, cross legged all around the her. She opens up her book and crouches down to get as close to her students as possible. She has a great story telling voice (which doesn’t hurt). Her students listen with such intent and watch eagerly as she turns the pages. She has their complete and total attention – which can be challenging with 20 six year olds just before recess.
Story telling is the best way to capture an audience and that is why I chose Bernadette Jiwa to follow throughout the #CBUS111 course. I am inspired by Jiwa’s storytelling and her ability to make you feel like she is talking to you, as opposed to a demographic that you might fall into. She says it best in her recent blog The Five-Step Brand Story Framework “Instead of wondering what we should say, we need to start our storytelling by asking who the story is for, and then by asking why this story will resonate with that particular audience.”
Image from http://thestoryoftelling.com/about/
Jiwa talks about deepening connections with our customers in her blog Conversion Vs. Connection. A good story speaks to us so we need to understand our clients and our audience and we need to learn how to listen to them and treat them as individuals. Too often I have seen business people pitch an idea without properly knowing their audience. We all need to craft stories that keep customers engaged beyond the sale and make every step of their journey meaningful and personalized, as if they were sitting listening to Ms. Nancy.