Business Brain Food

Valerie Khoo’s story is all about... well… stories! In the modern world of data analysis in business, it is easy to neglect the art of storytelling as part of the marketing mix, so Valerie has tried to address this with her book, Business Power Stories. It actually debuted at number two in the Australian business-book chart (only beaten by Richard Branson), so it was great to be able to get a sneak preview of it on this week’s show. Valerie also founded the National Writing Centre in Australia, which has grown to become an international writing tutorial network that has helped 23,000 students since 2005. Judging by the poor standard of the message on many websites, a lot of businesses could benefit from this kind of training.

The book is based around the need for every business to tell eight different power stories, i.e. their ‘product story’ or their ‘customer story’. Here are some of Valerie’s tips for successful storytelling in business:

  • Customer stories are always important because they can strike a chord with the public who are reading, but this can often be more than a simple testimonial.
  • When thinking about a case study, quite simply define the ‘before’, the ‘during’ (i.e., when they were using your product or service), and the ‘after’.
  • Think long and hard about whether to write about yourself in the third or first person.
  • Don’t get hung up on telling stories in chronological order.
  • 80% of sales is based on emotion, so only 20% is based on logic. It is the stories about a person, business or product that conjure the emotion.

A constant battle for businesses/people is that they don’t think their story is very interesting. As true as that might be when they think about it themselves, there’s a high chance that some other people will have similar stories so they will be able to identify with it. Also, authenticity is often more important than simply ‘being interesting’.

In this episode of Business Brain Food you will learn:

  • How to approach writing an ‘About’ page on a website
  • The importance of frameworks
  • The different types of stories that need to be told
  • The power of targeting a specific audience

The most important thing that Jay will tell you is that some of the most successful companies in the world simply started as an idea – something that solved a problem that we could all identify with in everyday life.  You don’t need to be able to develop, build or market the concept yourself – the real money is in the idea.  So if you look hard enough at all the problems you face in everyday life, you can make yourself a billionaire just by knowing how to solve the problem that no one else has solved yet!

Resources mentioned in this episode:

The overall message is that telling a story isn’t as intimidating as many people think. There are established frameworks out there that have been proven to work time and time again. All it takes is to understand these frameworks and then fill in the gaps with your own person information, and hey presto, you’ve told your company story! If you are enjoying these Business Brain Food podcasts, then make sure to share them via social media sites or email the links to family and friends. A lot of time and effort goes into producing each of these podcasts with the goal in mind of the more people we can inspire about business the better. You can help us do just that! Until next time, have a profitable day. Cheers, Ben Fewtrell

Direct download: BBF074_Business_Power_Stories_With_Valerie_Khoo.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm AEDT