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Crafting Compelling Stories

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“I want my stories to move people … to feel some kind of reward from the writing.”

Alice Munro, In Her Own Words: 2013 Nobel Prize in Literature

We all love to hear stories, it makes us connect in a deeper level with the narrator.  It’s a break from our routines and can easily helps us view the world from a different perspective.  We can identify small pieces of that story that are related to us and make unique connection.  That’s the magic of storytelling.

I had the opportunity this week to work on a beautiful project with an artist that wants to become known for her craft. The first reaction is pretty obvious: Social Media! But the thing is that Social Media is a very crowded space and we all cry out loud for attention (I use my cats, but it works!), and it’s hard to keep anyone interested for more than a minute if we don’t use wisely those very brief moments of our followers scrolling on their phones or deleting emails in a row. We’re all busy, we’re all overwhelmed and we’re pretty hard to impress nowadays. But, if we go back to the basics, we can identify those daily simple moments, those universal aspirations and general admiration and use them to craft a story where our product or service lives.

alice-munro-quote-candelita

When I sat down with this artist and asked her what she really wanted, the words didn’t matter anymore, I could see in her eyes and the way she talked about her work that she wanted people to love and enjoy her pieces as little treasures.  That’s very powerful.  Why?  Because the purpose of her being famous in the crazy crowded social media timelines meant for her to have people see beyond her craft and discover the world where these pieces live in, what she wants us to experience and how easy our lives can be improved by welcoming these little jewels.

We browse images of people using and enjoying her pieces, and brainstormed the different objects and environments that live and can be part of the world she created, or at least imagined her crafts would live in.  This led us to a great discovery, and it was that it’s not about the pieces, it’s about the satisfaction and the moments of joy these handmade objects could bring to anyone’s lives, and the best part is that by showing them this way, we’re not only crafting a story that in tuned with her vision as an artist but it also makes these pieces so desirable that that transactional action (the awkward buying process) will happen in the most natural way.  Anyone will want to have that in their lives, anyone will want to create that little piece of paradise she portrays in her images, and anyone will want to share in their Social Media how they’re now part of this exclusive world that our beloved artist has created for us and we would’ve have missed if it wasn’t by the story surrounding these objects.

It doesn’t matter what you offer, if you can create a story around it and incorporate your product or service with daily routines and universal desires, you’ve taken the lead in your field, you’ve made a niche for yourself and made your offer so different that’s desirable for the members of your brand’s world. (tweet this!)

What type of stories can you come up with that support your brand in a compelling way?

Header Image: penunuja via Flickr

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