Building a Story Brand by Donald Miller

Published by Tim Levey on 23 July 2019

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New York Times bestselling author, Donald Miller, uses the 7 elements of great storytelling to allow readers to improve how they connect with customers and grow their business.

What made me read this?

I run two “Intelligo” groups for Business Leaders – this was chosen as a book for one group to all read or listen to and bring back comments for the next meeting.

Best quote

“Here is nearly every story you see or hear in a nutshell: a CHARACTER who wants something encounters a PROBLEM before they can get it. At the peak of their despair, a GUIDE steps into their lives, gives them a PLAN and CALLS THEM TO ACTION. That action helps them to avoid FAILURE and ends in SUCCESS.”

What’s the Big Idea?

The Character in any story is the Hero and a business should position itself as a Guide to that Hero. The story of your brand will confuse potential customers if you don’t stick to the formula – for example, what happens if you position the business as the Hero, don’t make it clear the Problem that you are trying to solve and have no Call to Action?

Key learning 1

Just as every story needs a Hero, it also needs a Villain. Make it clear who the Villain is, for example, HMRC who can get tax law wrong, other accountants who don’t listen. Does your marketing make it clear who the Villain is?

Key learning 2

There are 3 levels of Problem faced – External, Internal and Philosophical. For a Financial Planning firm, the External issues for a client could be that they need help with choosing and managing investments; the Internal issue is that they are confused by the different opinions that they read; and the Philosophical may be that they feel they deserve an adviser who will explain things on what to invest and will help them to invest ethically. Work out what those 3 levels are for you clients and get a better response.

Key learning 3

Question whether your current Marketing passes the Grunt test – could a caveman look at your website and understand what you offer?

To explore these ideas at a deeper level, you can get your copy of this book here.

If you would like to discuss the ideas in this book or are interested in finding out more about how the “Intelligo” groups work, contact Tim Levey here or on +44 (0)330 124 1399.

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