Want to Market Your Business? Tell a Story
Updated: Aug 12
Every family has at least one storyteller, whether it’s the uncle always catching five-foot fish, or the sister meeting exquisite characters at the supermarket.
Even if you aren’t really one to spin a yarn, we are each of us storytellers—if you are a small business owner, this is especially true for you.
One of the challenges of owning a business is introducing your product to customers. You have to show them why you’re the best. How do you do this? By telling your story!
Why is it important to tell the story of your business?
Humans relate to stories—after all, we are each currently living one. When pitching your product, remember that people aren’t just shopping for an object. They are looking for something they can relate to, and they want to do business with someone they know.
Every family has at least one storyteller...
This is why it is important to introduce yourself and your business. But you don’t want to write down a dry string of facts: few customers will slog through that. Tell your story, show them why you’re excited about your business, and why they should be too.
How do you go about telling your business story?
Joseph Pulitzer, owner and publisher for the New York World newspaper from 1883 until his death in 1911, said this about journalism:
“[I]t’s my duty to see that they get the truth; but that’s not enough, I’ve got to put it before them briefly so that they will read it, clearly so that they will understand it, forcibly so that they will appreciate it, picturesquely so that they will remember it, and, above all, accurately so that they may be wisely guided by its light.”
The “they” Pulitzer is referring to in this quote are his readers; for the small business owner, “they”are customers. You need to tell the story of your business, and Mr. Pulitzer nicely outlines how best to do this.
Briefly: Time is Money!
People are busy, and their time is precious. When telling the story of your business, keep this in mind—don’t be unnecessarily wordy.
Clearly: Speak Their Language.
The temptation when writing is to use words you wouldn’t when talking. Write your business story like you would if you were telling it to someone you just met.
Forcibly: Make it Clear Why You’re the Best.
Why did you start a business? Obviously because you have something to offer that no other business can. Tell people what that is! Let your passion and excitement shine through.
Picturesquely: Paint The Picture
We each absorb a lot of information everyday, and when we are deciding what business to use, the one that stands out is what we’ll keep coming back to. So have fun with your story—make it quirky, clever, eloquent—but above all, make it YOU.
Accurately: The Most Important Feature
There is more to telling a story than writing it well: it’s making sure the facts are straight. You want to be someone your customers know they can trust. The moment your facts aren’t straight, you’ve lost trust.
Humans relate to stories—after all, we are each currently living one.
Get the word out, and tell the life story of your business!
Brew yourself some iced tea, sit down, and write the story of your business. Tell us who you are, what you have to offer, and why you are the best. Keep Mr. Pulitzer’s words by your side to guide the way.
But while you are being brief, clear, forcible, picturesque, and accurate, remember also to be yourself. Remember that people want more than just the product you’re selling, they want YOU.
So introduce yourself, be playful, be sincere. Tell your business story, and have some fun along the way. We look forward to reading it!