Stories are very important in our day-to-day communications, and have been for a very long time.
Perhaps the first words ever used by mankind, were used to tell a story. Stories are often encoded with layers of deeper meanings; and room for interpretations; so a master can apply a few stories to many different scenarios. Some are told to warn of impending dangers; some celebrate major events; while others instruct us of things to do or places to go; or simply entertain our minds.
In today’s fast-paced world of digital communications; stories are just as powerful as ever. In fact… they are BIG BUSINESS and we still use stories for entertainment; cautions; and celebrations. We voluntarily spend our hard-earned cash to buy stories that other people write.
In music; Michael Jackson’s little story called Thriller sold 110 Million copies worldwide. (The argument could be made that it is really a movie; and that it was made to coincide with the launch of MTV in 1981– making it a bit of an extreme example.) Pink Floyd’s 1973 release of Dark Side of the Moon has hit 50 million in sales. While The Beatles Sgt. Pepper’s only sold 32 million copies; it is estimated that the Fab Four have sold over 700 Million copies of their stories (aka, albums).
Few stories get much bigger than The Big Screen? Avatar currently tops the all time USA Box Office list with a cool $760 Million. But when a books like The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit sell a combined 250 Million copies and are then made into a series of movies that brings a combined $1Billion in box office sales – we get to see how great stories can span time (about 50 years in this case). Look here for a complete list of top book sales and here for movie sales.
I’d like to tell you about a young lady who came to me nearly four years ago when she was finishing Cosmetology School. She had big plans about how her career as a hairdresser was going to play out; but was intimidated by not knowing how to make it happen. I have been coaching her off and on; and am happy to say that she is now in a position to teach and inspire hairdressers across the country who have been working almost as long as she has been walking!
I learned to sell through stories – sharing testimonials or the positive experiences of one customer with a prospect. Write your own stories that celebrate the profits you made key clients. I learned to also document the tragedies of companies that didn’t buy my services and no longer exist in order to tell it as a story as well.
Stories work because they are easy to create; every experience with your business is a story in the making. Stories are easy to remember; they are etched directly into our memories as experiences. Stories are easy to share; you can swap a story or two in the time it takes to make a cup of coffee; and many more while drinking it.
Copyright © David R Frick/SuccessVentures LLC 2012 All Rights Reserved. No part of this document may be reproduced without written consent from the author.