How to Use Fairy Stories to Boost Your Business

How to Use Fairy Stories to Boost Your Business

Created: Thursday, May 4, 2017 posted by at 9:30 am

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Storytelling is a powerful business tool. It can help us explain our business and make it resonate with our audience.

And a great story is all about the structure. Fairy tales do this perfectly:

You start by setting the scene
Once upon a time there was……

You then have a problem
Once upon a time there was……

Then there is rising tension as the problem can’t be solved
… she couldn’t go to the Ball…

Then you have the climax or tipping point
…he thought he’d never see her again…

Then there is the resolution
…the slipper fitted perfectly…

And finally, you have a new status quo
… and they lived happily ever after

To create a well-structured story for your business you need to start by considering the ‘why’ of your business. Nearly every business solves a problem and your story needs to be about the problems you are solving.

A word of warning: your story must be authentic and based on truth and reality. Above all, it must not just be a sales pitch.

Always construct the end of the story first – it’s easier to start a journey if you know the destination. Paint a picture of how the client felt after you had helped them (the ‘…and they all lived happily ever after’ line).

Now go back to the beginning of the story and set the scene.

Explain how you helped them realize that they had a problem.

Describe how this problem was affecting them.

Outline what the long-term consequences of inaction would have been.

Explain the resolution – how you can help them with the solution.

Explain how wonderful the client felt at the end of the journey and how much better the new Status Quo was.

How to Use Fairy Stories to Boost Your Business

How to Use Fairy Stories to Boost Your Business
Image: Toastmasters Professional Images

There are some important points to remember to make your story really effective:

  • Make the client (or someone like them) the hero of the story.
  • If the story is about another client, make sure the person you are telling will think “they are just like me.”
  • Never make yourself the hero – it is their story, you are just the guide.
  • You must include a pivot point, a moment of tension, without this you will not have a story.

Storytelling may seem like an old-fashioned tool – and it is. That’s exactly what makes it so powerful. A story can go where logic, numbers, and analysis cannot: our hearts. Data can persuade people but it cannot call them to action. Nothing can fire the imagination or awaken the soul like a story.

Christopher Hirsch is from Toastmasters International, a non-profit educational organisation that teaches public speaking and leadership skills through a worldwide network of meeting locations. Headquartered in Rancho Santa Margarita, California, the organization’s membership exceeds 345,000 in more than 15,900 clubs in 142 countries. Since 1924, Toastmasters International has helped people of all backgrounds become more confident in front of an audience.

There are more than 300 clubs in the UK and Ireland with over 7,500 members. To find your local club, visit Toastmasters International. You can follow @Toastmasters on Twitter.

The views and opinions expressed in this blog post or content are those of the authors or the interviewees and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of any other agency, organization, employer, or company.

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