You probably don't have many resources to back your ideas. You don't have a multi million dollar ad budget or a team of professional spinners. Your ideas need to stand on their own merits.
Your story will help you make your ideas stick. By "stick," we mean that your ideas are understood and remembered, and have a lasting impact - they change your audience's opinions or behavior.
You can work with the same 3 elements that make great movies so powerful, and create a "sticky" story. Here's how:
1. A strong introduction that capture attention; usually a question to be answered, something to be found or a task to be achieved.
2. A climax where the main character reaches a crossroads (physically or mentally) and has to choose a direction and what to do.
3. A conclusion that ties the beginning question to the end result for viewers.
A Strong Introduction
Start your story by telling prospects what drove you to take the worrying and often terrifying step of starting your own business. What was missing for you in your corporate job? Was there an event that made you decide to go out on your own?
Here a real intros from Marc Dorval who now runs a multi-million dollar company called Pro/Soft technologies. Don't you want to hear more? Marc's prospects certainly do!
People often ask me how I got started in the IT business. Back in 1991, it was a pretty bad recession period. I was the IT manager for a construction and interior-design firm, and the writing was on the wall for that firm. A few of my contacts at a computer reseller suggested that I'd do great on my own, and that they'd be happy to refer business my way. My wife and I had just closed another business, sold our house to pay for the debts that this venture had created, and had our first child! September 15, 1991, I sat at my desk, looked at my phone, and wondered if the phone would ever ring.
Use colourful, simple language to relate how you made it past a milestone, fixed a problem or overcame adversity. Provide lots of detail to make your success come alive. And don't leave out the emotion -we are wired to feel things for people, not for companies.
Create a story people understand, remember and can retell later. If prospects believe it's true, it might change their behaviour and convert them to customer status.
Here's where you tie your story to your prospects. How does your experience help them overcome their biggest frustration, solve a difficult problem or see new possibilities for the future?
Summarize the lessons you have learned that will benefit them. Create a checklist of the 10 things they should never do, based on your experience. Provide a list of helpful tips and tricks they can use right away.
For More Guidance About Writing a Great Story
We are such big fans of Chip and Dan Heath's Made to Stick that we include it in all our coaching programs. There's lots of free stuff on their site.