The Power of Storytelling
If you’re an entrepreneur you are reminded how important storytelling is to your business. It’s the platform to
share your message with potential clients. Are you a good storyteller,” asked Park Howell to a room full of social media and marketing professionals.
Are you a good storyteller? I asked myself and raised my hand. Yes I am a good storyteller. I was wrong. In the workshop Howell shared the Joseph Campbell’s Hero’s Journey, the Story Cycle is a 17-step that make for compelling storytelling. Now, I’m going to share those tips with you. In his talk he drew on our memories of stories we had grown up. Raiders Of The Lost Ark, Star Wars, and Game of Thrones. What did they have in common? Heroes. A good guy. Someone relatable, who is propelled to leave their daily life, meets a mentor, begins a journey, faces challenges, becomes victorious, and returns home with an understanding the journey was not only a trip but a voyage of self-discovery and now they are ready for more challenges.
Wow, my stories are now going to get a lot better! Howell gave us the opportunity to create our own stories in a nifty little book. He also offered a challenge, the story could be no longer than 3 minutes. Yes, 120 seconds to share your message. Now that’s a challenge. I started with one story, decided that was impossible and then started another story only to flip back to the original story. Then during the second round, the story crystallized and as I type this now the memory is just as fresh.
Here’s the story I shared on the stage at Social Media Marketing World 2o16
The first scene is an elderly woman going through her photo albums. Photograph of her college, on the rowing team. You see her story unfolding with marriage, family, then illness, the death of her husband. Now she is faced with the possibility she may have to give up driving. Driving is the only way she has ever gotten around. What is she going to do? We see her talking to a gerontologist. Her challenge is learning to use public transportation. She has some health and vision challenges. In the next scene we see her exercising, walking, and through trial and error learns how to use public transportation. Eventually becoming comfortable and confident using buses and trolleys. Eventually using a smartphone for information. She realizes it wasn’t giving up the car keys that was limiting her freedom. It was her fear of trying something new. She thinks if I can learn how to use buses and technology perhaps I can learn how to use Lyft and Uber. If I can learn those, what about AirBNB? The last scene is of her hands typing into AirBNB site and searching for places in Zimbabwe.