By Jennie Wong
The Charlotte Observer
Are your business stories unforgettable?
Every business claims to have amazing customer service, the lowest prices or a “secret blend.”
We hear and see these kind of marketing messages so often that we’re practically immune to them.
But stories are a different matter.
Stories engage our hearts and minds in a more vivid and memorable way.
So how can you make your business stories equally compelling and repeatable?
DEFINE YOUR ORIGIN STORY:
Start at the beginning by crafting the origin story of your business.
Some origin stories begin in college, some in childhood. Some even go back multiple generations. Many begin in adversity.
Think about how you talk about and describe the entrepreneurs you know.
When I get home from a networking event, I’m not going to tell my husband about a new acquaintance by listing their service offerings. Instead, I’ll describe their business in terms of their personal life story. The former Marine who taught himself to code, the birth doula who is the granddaughter of a famous obstetrician, or the Realtor who is also a professional sports announcer.
Each of these origin stories serves a dual purpose. Not only does it create a peg for remembering that specific person and their business, it also implicitly conveys a reason for doing business with them, e.g. discipline, expertise, poise. In a sense, your story is your brand.
Your origin story will likely help you clarify what you want to be known for. Or you might find that what you want to be known for doesn’t relate directly to your origin. That’s fine, too.