Only You Can Save Your Business
It had been steady, slow, but steady. The battle to start their business really was a battle but they had persevered and it was working. A small group of happy clients kept them afloat. Growth wasn't spectacular, but enough to keep the wolves from the door.
The whispers of trouble seemed so far-fetched. It was almost like a bad movie plot. So they just went about their happy existence and kept a skeptical eye on the reports. It turns out it wasn’t science fiction or a bad movie and it ended. Just like that it ended.
Covid was real. It was like a spigot turned off the water. Their business was a ghost town. Nothing they had ever done or learned prepared them for a global pandemic. It is a continuing nightmare to this day.
Walk-in business stopped dead. People were afraid to even accept a delivery. They had some potential for digital business but zero experience. Besides, EVERY other business in the world was rushing to the online universe and competition, once local, became global.
Bills were the same, revenue was next to zero, digital salvation was not the reality they had hoped for and they were now just another sad story among millions of sad stories.
The whispers of hope seemed far-fetched, almost like a sappy movie plot. So they just went about their panicked existence living with skepticism. It turns out our species oldest communication method might just save the day. They couldn’t believe it.
Storytelling????? You have got to be kidding me. I have a million worries and you are pitching telling my business story as the way out of anonymity and invisibility?
Cave paintings, the beginning of visual storytelling date back 30 years to the Chauvet cave in France.
Hieroglyphics date back 5,000 years.
Oral myths date back just as far and many cultures still use stories that date back into the mists of antiquity.
The Greeks started using the written story about 750 AD, and the printing press in the 15th century introduced writing to the masses.
Now we are all on the Internet.
Let’s think about what the communication style of the world is today. Ready?
Facebook is a collection of stories from your friends and endless advertisers.
Instagram is a visual storytelling platform.
Video is taking over the Internet because it is a more realistic storytelling medium.
Movies, TV shows, Podcasts, Blogs, Vlogs, etc. etc. etc. are all about storytelling.
The framework for the story is almost always the same.
1) Intro of the way the world is for our hero
2) The crisis that changed their world and finding the mentor to help them save their world
3) The resolution of success or failure and how both those makes their world look now
Does your business have a story that you are actually telling? Are you describing the values, company culture and ethos that resonate with potential clients? Do you have any emotional calls-to-action that your potential clients can empathize with?
How do you succeed in marketing your business?
1) Tell your story, transparently, honestly and based on the emotion your feel for your product or service.
2) Tell your story to a precise group of people that will empathize, resonate and become advocates for your product or service.
3) Continue to speak to your “Tribe” as Seth Godin describes them. Focus your efforts on only those people. You don’t sell to everyone, you sell to SOMEBODY.
4) Strive to form a community of the people above and offer value, honesty and inclusiveness at all times.
The first step is mining your past for your story.
What lead you to where you are today?
Why this business?
Why your passion?
What is the emotion that drives you and thus would drive your potential clients as well?
What struggles did you overcome and what struggles plague you today?
The ONLY differentiator between you and your competitors is your STORY.
Unless you have invented a new process or product that no one else has you are awash in a sea of competitors.
They all claim the best service, price, quality, delivery, etc. We as customers have heard it all a million times and it falls on deaf ears.
But YOUR story is new, fresh and uniquely yours. If it is a compelling story I am all in. I will listen and potentially try you out just based on empathy with your journey.
Explore your path to where you are in your business. Explore the trauma and joy that shaped your decision to begin a company. Tell me about it as openly as you can. If I can bond emotionally with your adventure I can become a loyal customer and maybe even an advocate. I might tell all my friends about what you do because I am so invested emotionally with you and what you do.
We are happy to chat about developing a compelling story for you to begin your successful marketing journey.