“Great stories happen to those who can tell them.” – Ira Glass, American radio show host
Storytelling is hard. Extremely hard. Probably one of the hardest things to do. Unless–I’ve learned while studying abroad–you happen to be from Ireland, where the Irish have a natural ability to tell stories over a pint of Guinness.
The plot thickens when you mix storytelling and business. Over the years, I’ve witnessed some of the most brilliant leaders struggle with telling their story–the story they created.
We all have a story to tell. Whether you run an independent ice cream shop in a quiet neighborhood or you’re the next best thing to come out of the Silicon Valley, it’s not the lack of a story that’s the problem, it’s the ability to tell it.
No one knows a business better than the one who got it off the ground. So why is storytelling so difficult for leaders?
It’s a busy world, competition is high, and we’re all passionate about what we do. Ergo, we try extremely hard to be seen and heard above all the noise. A common reaction is to scream “Buy from me!!!” at the top of our lungs, but this approach is ineffective. Yes, you’ll be heard, but the answer to “Why should I buy from you?” becomes unclear.
An effective brand story communicates complex ideas using simple words. To develop an effective brand story, always remember these three rules:
1. Keep it simple.
2. Stay consistent.
3. Be true.