This week, I was excited to see a popular post on LinkedIn that talked about the importance of storytelling in business communication, even going so far as to call it the most important skill that businesses have in their toolboxes to connect with potential and current clients.
This is great news for us, as writers! Many companies don’t have the ability to effectively tell their own stories: that isn’t where their strength lies. Our services are in higher demand than ever as the need for well-crafted narratives rises.
Many of you might ask what makes an effective story. In this week’s video, I outline three critical elements of storytelling that will set you apart as a writer and add value to your clients.
Hi, it’s Gail Mercer-MacKay here, founder of the 6-Figure Freelance Writer, coming to you this week to talk to you about storytelling. So I was really excited this week to read a post on LinkedIn that was shared over 15,000 times, from a gentleman who said that storytelling is the new business communication skill that businesses need to master.
So that’s really good news for us, because most people are really not that great at telling stories, or they have challenges telling stories. That’s where we come in: writers! We love to tell stories. I just want to remind you of the three things that you need. If you’re watching this and you’re just getting started with your business, or if you’re not a storyteller but you want to try and write stories for your business, here are the three things that every story needs.
It needs character, it needs conflict, and it needs resolution. When you think about it, when you’re starting to tell a story, whether it’s on your website, or on a blog post, or a customer case study, or anything about a new product or solution, you want to be able to connect emotionally with the reader. To do that, you have to have characters in the story that people can feel empathy with or can connect to. So part of that story needs to be the people that are going to be featured in the story. They may not be real people, but they have to have some kind of a persona so that people who are reading can connect and identify and feel empathy with what they’re reading about.
The second thing is conflict. Conflict is usually about the challenge or the problem that someone is having, and that a business is trying to solve with their product or their service. So, somebody has a problem buying a new house? There’s a company that can come in and help them find financing, or help them find a realtor. Help them put it on the market. Those are all challenges that a company could help someone overcome; if they’re trying to sell a house and don’t know how to do it.
It’s the same in the technology world. So if you’ve got a piece of technology that helps somebody do something really well, that’s the problem that you’re solving for somebody who’s running into a conflict. You need to make sure that you can play up that conflict, and again: have the reader be able to see themselves in that conflict, because that’s how businesses are connecting with their buyers these days. Buyers are reading about things they’re doing online and they’re reaching out and connecting with them, because they see themselves in the story, and they say “Yeah, this is something that I need.”
And finally is the resolution. Every story needs a happy ending, and you need to have a happy ending in your story as well. So when you tell the story, you also have to show how the people have evolved, how they’ve grown, how they’ve found satisfaction by solving the conflict, or solving the challenge or the problem that they had. And that’s the resolution that comes at the end.
So those are the three things to keep in mind as you’re writing for clients, or writing for yourself, or just thinking about getting into this business. It’s so important; there’s a huge opportunity for storytellers these days to have a great career writing for companies: in particular technology companies, which is what we specialize in here.
That’s it for this week! I hope you’re inspired to go out and tell more stories, and until next week:
Believe, Be Brave and Go Write!