Let’s do a quick quiz!
- Do you remember the Schrödinger wave equation?
- Do you remember the name of the Disney princess with the longest hair in town?
- Do you remember the scientific name of the frog?
- Do you remember the story of the Princess and the Frog?
Yes, while we read of Rapunzel and the frog as kids in kindergarten, we don’t even remember stuff we studied only a couple of years ago, stuff that was essential for us to pass exams, get into big institutes and make our parents proud!
This, my friend, is the power of storytelling.
Unfortunate or not, this is exactly how our brain functions. We remember what we love or fear the most. Reason why the last breakup still brings tears to your eyes. Reason why mom always excelled at scaring you into eating that entire plate of rice as a kid!
Thus, I think we will all agree that stories are the best way of ingraining something into a human brain. I am no storyteller and do not plan on being one till the shackles of family life force me to tell some to my hypothetical kid! I mean business here.
My challenge is: how do we use storytelling to sell our business better?
Sounds quirky? Well, to be honest, it has been used by business tycoons across the globe for years now! Now, of course, you cannot expect to crack a deal by narrating the story of Hansel and Gretel to a room full of Directors only coz you are a good storyteller!
When you are selling your idea to some of the smartest people in business, things get a little tricky!
Let’s look at it this way: you have to sell a soap bar. You know its attributes and can sell it through rational advertising. But then, there are 5000 other soap bars on 500 other departmental stores in the same city! Why will a customer buy your bar and not anyone else’s? This is where you make up a story. How you make the story is up to you though!
It’s simple actually. As simple as a kid choosing a Tom & Jerry notebook over a brown boring cover notebook.
I will use the classic example of Dove here. When Dove came to India, it advertised itself as a moisturizing soap. And it worked, for some time. But then people got bored of that story. So, a new story had to be told. That is when Dove launched its Real Beauty Campaign. Dove told millions of women what women wanted to hear – they are the real Botox-free, make up free, imperfectly beautiful women.
And women bought that story. The Dove Real Beauty campaign is the most successful campaign at the moment.
I will repeat myself here, this is the power of storytelling. And now you know why!