The Astonishing Power of Telling a Story

In a recent seminar in Delhi, the speaker told a story about one of his student's startups: He made artificial roses with a special material that had moisture and it looked & smelled like real roses. He was taking them from India to US, to pitch to investors. On his way, they stopped him at custom - they thought that the roses were real and the questioning began. He could not convince them that the roses were artificial. Finally they called an expert who had a look at them under a microscope and was amazed to see (and announce) that the roses were artificial. He was given a certificate and they clicked some photos with him. Later he went to local florist in US with one of his fake roses and started comparing the two. After a while when florist inquired, he replied that he was trying to see difference between the fake one he is holding and the real one that the florist was selling. The florist could not believe that they were artificial, finally when he showed him the certificate and some other proofs the florist was convinced and impressed (duh!). He placed an order of $10,000. When that guy finally met the investors, he:
  • gave them all a stick of his artificial roses
  • showed few slides with photos take and the airport customs
  • the certificate of the roses being artificial
  • and the order of $10,000 from local florist
and that told them his story. That's it. They invested! Now look at the power of story - it got him the investment, made me listen to the speaker in middle of boring seminar and made you read my blog post! That's the power of telling a story. Look at your website's home page… does it tell a story of what you can do? Does your product page, your twitter profile, your facebook like page, the comments you write reflect back the story? Are they part of the story you want to tell? Story is not just told in words, but in everything you be, do, give and make people relate to you. You are telling a story whether you know or not. But the question is, is the story you want to tell? Let's hear your story…

You are reading a post that I wrote a long time back—at least 14 years ago. Take it with a bag of salt.

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