When I first encountered Building a StoryBrand in 2017, I thought of it as “Donald Miller’s new book.” See, I live in Portland, Oregon, where Miller also lived for over a decade and already had many followers. From his faith-based memoirs Blue like Jazz and A Million Miles in a Thousand Days (my favorite), Miller’s disarmingly witty straight talk about some of life’s most challenging topics—family, identity, and faith—earned him respect even among secular audiences.
So when I decided to check out the book and later what turned out to be his then “new” company, I was amazed. As a former English professor and story geek, I soon discovered Miller had managed to take the meta-concepts of story and convert them for business owners.
In other words, Miller figured out how to give business owners—but often non-marketers—simple tools to create more effective marketing.
Flash forward to 2020, and StoryBrand is a...
When I was growing up, it was not uncommon to find myself on the wrong end of a lecture. Don’t get me wrong—I was a pretty good kid. The problem, at least as I saw it, was that my parents came from the old world where long [and often boring] talks were used to address missteps, wrongdoings, and of course, to occasionally secure [or was it manipulate?] good behavior.
In a modern world, us parents are encouraged to instead start conversations with their children. Why? Because asking Timmy why he pulled the cat’s tail [again], puts the focus on the mentee, not the mentor, where assumptions [Timmy is a mean kid who will grow up to take his feelings out on innocent cats] are delayed rather than made.
Now it would be unwise to suggest that a parent comes to a conversation with his or her child as a blank slate. In fact, having a theory or two about how your child might be feeling [Timmy is feeling jealous of his baby sister or Timmy needs a nap or Timmy...
While this mantra proved true in the 1989 blockbuster film Field of Dreams, it’s unfortunately not a reliable truth in the world of web readership.
Still, if you run your own business or are tasked with writing content for your company, it's easy to be intimidated by the blank page. It's one thing to be a good communicator but quite another to create a web article or blog that gets read.
The problem is that sometimes helpful—even essential—information your audience needs is rarely sexy or emotional.
Topics designed to explain a concept are great for textbooks (but are textbooks great?) but they’re not ideal for getting busy readers to click and ingest.
Because in order to develop a readership, you need to do two important things:
1) Write the Article
2) Focus on one of your audience's problems
You might notice I did not say "use SEO language," and it really is super significant in getting...