Before television there was radio. Before radio there were books. And before books there were storytellers. The power of a well-told tale, passed down from generation to generation and recited from memory over a campfire, is the power that brought people together and formed the beginnings of cultures that have lasted even to the present day. No matter what the medium – stone tablets, movies, grocery store tabloid, the Internet – the story is central.
A good story stays with people and compels them to share it with others. It’s as true today as it was two thousand years ago – and it’s especially true of success stories. Everyone likes to hear them; everyone likes to have one. And doesn’t this align nicely with word-of-mouth marketing, where referrals are based on thousands of individual success stories? Every time one networker passes a referral to another, she is telling a story about a need fulfilled successfully or a problem solved effectively.
“A number of years ago, I met Robert Dickman, author of The Elements of Persuasion, and he taught me the formula for a good story:
A story is a fact
Wrapped in emotion
That compels us to take action
That transforms us in some way