Tell a Story: Show Your Product or Service in Action
When I reviewed my good friend Mike Weinberg’s fantastic new book-New Sales. Simplified.—I said the following: “Chapter 8: Sharpening Your Sales Story. For years I’ve been preaching the importance of storytelling to salespeople—what Mike Weinberg calls the Sales Story”; I said that because Mike’s take on storytelling resonated with me. I wholeheartedly believe in telling stories, that salespeople who tell stories to sell their products and services are light years ahead of those who don’t.
When you just tell your prospect about your product or service, in an abstract fashion, he’s going to be able to follow the information you’re proffering only so far; you’ll be lucky if he absorbs 20% of what you’re saying; his interest will be peaked nowhere near what it might have been, if he’d been able to follow a narrative with his own five senses.
That’s what a great story accomplishes that an abstract rendition can’t: it allows the prospect to absorb the narrative with his own five senses. He identifies with the characters in the story, is right there with them emotionally connecting with them, and therefore emotionally connecting with your product or service. He isn’t just being told about the positive merits of the product or service; he’s seeing, hearing, tasting, smelling, and touching those positive benefits directly from the action of your story.
When I sold advertising to small businesspeople, I always told stories about specific clients and the specific success my service had provided them. The prospect wasn’t just being told of the successes; he was viscerally absorbing those successes through his own five senses, emotionally connecting with those successes. He was there “watching” it happen, following the action as it unfolded. He was part of the action.
In the first chapter of my book Selling Fearlessly—The Mound Road Story (which is available for you to read on this site)—I give you a story about persistence. Take some time to read it. Then ask yourself, Would being told about persistence in an abstract way have anywhere near the effect on me re my understanding of the importance of persistence, that this story delivers? It’s a no brainer, isn’t it? You come away from the story emotionally affected. And the best part is, the story is going to stay with you forever. It isn’t going to fade away in a matter of hours or days the way abstract telling does.
I’m constantly being sent sales books to read and review. They’re wonderful books, chock full of valuable information, which is why I recommend them. However, I’ll admit, I have to fight my way through most of them because they’re written in an abstract fashion—the author telling the reader what to do; it’s almost like sitting in on a lecture. When I sat down to create Selling Fearlessly, I knew instinctively that I didn’t want to do it that way; that I wanted to entertain my audience with compelling stories; that I wanted to make it a fun read, as well as provide enlightening and inspiring information. Take a look at all the endorsements and reviews for Selling Fearlessly and you will constantly see “storytelling” being mentioned.
Start telling stories, my friends, and watch your selling career take off like a rocket to the stars.
Posted by Robert Terson | 6 comments