How to tell your story
A couple of days ago, I was given the assignment of answering one of the most frequently asked questions in marketing, “why do so many businesses find it so difficult to tell their story?” My first reaction was, “the answers are endless and any answer is correct.” I’ll begin with the realization that has ended more attempts than any other…
A: It needs to be great.
Perhaps you can relate… You sit down at your computer, bang out a couple of sentences, then edit and edit and edit until you’re staring at a screen filled with two sentences expressed 25 different ways. It needs to be great, occupies your mind and applies its pressure. So, you write, edit, edit, and edit some more until you find yourself in the same place an hour or so later. The only real difference is you’re now questioning your basic ability to communicate anything at all.
A: It’s difficult.
Having expressed the difficulty in getting started, you may not want to know that getting started is actually the easy part. From the first keystroke, progress is apparent. The letters quickly become words and sentences soon begin to fill your screen. At some point the page begins to scroll so you can’t see the beginning or the ending… this is when the task becomes even more difficult.
A: Many stop too soon.
Pushing through is key to writing your business’ story. It will take longer than expected… enjoy the journey. Focus on progress until you reach the end. Take breaks, but don’t give up. Consider involving others. Shameless self-promotion alert: I just so happen to know a group of people who would love to help.
A: Those who have a good business story are often too busy running their business to tell their story.
Maybe you can relate… your passion and abilities came together in the form of a product or service that generated an unmistakable attraction, so much to do, and not enough time to do it. So, you did, did, did, and now you do, do, do. By the time you identify the need for messaging – and you will identify that need – you have a pile of successes but no idea how to craft those business success stories into a compelling story, one that will result in a response from your target audience. This is what we do. Peebles Creative Group has a proven process that serves as a roadmap for navigating the challenges that appear on the way to effective messaging.
A: Those who are living a great business story may not appreciate just how good their story is.
What you do is important; it speaks to capabilities. However, if your story is limited to what you do, you’re skipping the best part.
Let me provide an example. We’re on the verge of launching new messaging for an engineering firm. Not being an engineer myself, I invested in weeks of research familiarizing myself with the field. What I found came as no surprise: the majority of their competitors spent a lot of time talking about what they do. So, we took a different approach and crafted a more compelling story – sharing how they do what they do, and why they do it that way. By focusing on the how and the why, we moved beyond capabilities and told their story of commitment, peace of mind, and satisfaction. When your messaging provides “a sense of purpose for all that we do… a reason for employees to care as much as they care,” a deeper connection with your customers is sure to follow.
A: All of the above
Hopefully, you’ve found something of value in my answers. Maybe you just needed to know that your struggle is shared. Or, perhaps you gave up to soon. At Peebles Creative Group, we believe effective marketing requires many steps: Discovery, Strategy, Messaging, Planning, Execution, and Verification. What do I say? Where do I say it? How do I make sure it gets read once it’s there? The first thing you need to know is there’s no one answer to these questions. The answers are specific and unique to you.
We’ve provided the answers for many and would welcome the opportunity to answer these questions for you. Just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.