Storytelling: how to write your own story

StorytellingWe all know that we should share our stories with the marketplace to help create a connection with our clients. The trouble is that most of us have no idea about what our story is or how to tell it.  We’ve lived it, so it’s not a story to us. It’s just life, right?  Well, it’s not just life to anyone else. It IS a story and it’s all yours. It’s the story of what shaped you into the person you are and how it caused you to build your particular business.

So how can find the story behind your business? Here are a few things to think about.  Make some notes as you go so that you can start crafting your tale.

  1. What is important to you and why? Do you want to improve the lives of third world women because you’ve seen how hard they work? Do you want to make it easier for parents to work from home because, after struggling through it yourself, you know how to do that? What are your values?
  2. Who sparked the idea? Was there an incident or event that made you realise what you wanted to do? Did you read a quote or meet someone who inspired you? Many of us can remember the exact moment that someone gave us the “aha” moment.
  3. Is there something special about your products?  Do they have their own story? For example, Green Toys are driven by the desire to reduce waste and save the environment so their toys are made with eco-friendly recycled materials. Where do your products come from? Why did you choose them? How do they connect to your purpose?
  4. How did you get to where you are now?  You had an idea and now it’s reality but along the way you probably experienced difficulties as well as surprising successes. You might have travelled to find what you needed or perhaps went back to school to earn qualifications. What is the story behind your journey?
  5. What were your biggest learning experiences?  OK, translate this to mean what were your stuff-ups, which are often where you learn most. People love to know that you messed up and yet you have succeeded.  It inspires them but it shows that you are only human and that will make people comfortable with you. A bit of imperfection is a great thing!

Don’t rush the answers to these questions. Sit with them and daydream a little. Relive your story.  Remember how you felt and what you thought.  It isn’t just your actions that make a story. Make notes of everything that comes to you. Now you have the basis for your story. You just have to pull it together and start sharing it.