Strategic Story Planning
Strategic Story Planning is essential when we start working on a story.
“Plans are worthless, but planning is everything.” – Winston Churchill
Let’s start planning your story, and prove your products and services are the ones to use!
First, we undertake a discovery and questioning process.
This means, getting to understand your business, your products and services, your messaging goals and objectives.
After all, to ensure your story resonates with your target audience, careful planning is required.
What is the purpose of the story?
We need to clearly determine what is the purpose of the story? And, what results or outcomes are you looking to achieve?
Are you looking to build your credibility?
Educate a customer?
Demonstrate the great results you have delivered for one of your customers? Perhaps something else?
What are the outcomes you are looking for your story to achieve?
In other words, are you looking to-
- Demonstrate you deliver on your promises,
- Educate customers on the benefits of your product, or service,
- Overcome doubts and objections,
- Generate new leads and sales, or
- Build a Brand?
Who is the target audience?
Essential to framing a great story is understanding who you specifically want to read the story.
After all, if we are looking to get the attention of a target customer they must resonate with the story. Our goal is to build an emotional connection.
This means we need to understand-
How do they make their buying decisions?
What is the problem your target audience has that you are providing a solution to?
Is the customer you are looking to profile in your story suitable and willing to be highlighted?
Understand the “heroes Journey”.
To make your story sing, you first need to carefully examine and understand the background and history of the Customer to be profiled.
What was their business like before you came along and provided your solution?
How big was the problem? What challenges were they facing?
How was the problem showing up in their business? Cost blowout? Customer complaints? Low productivity? Etc.
Why did they decide to buy your solution?
How did the implementation process go?
What sort of challenges did they face with the implementation?
What sort of support did they receive during the implementation phase? Since?
What were the impacts of the change? What were the highlights?
How has the business improved as a result of the change?
Were the changes measurable?
Getting the Proof
Careful planning is essential to creating stories that sell products and services.
Prior to interviewing the customer to be featured, we need to determine what specific performance metrics and customer quotes are required to prove up any product claims.
For example, being able to say productivity improved by 23% is way more powerful than just saying productivity improved. Or, by asking questions like what did these improvements mean to the business, will encourage positive comments that make great quotes to use in the story.
Quotes have the power to add a real punch to the story and to get the attention of your target customer.
This means questions need to be framed to get the answers we want.
The better the clarity we have, the better the questions we can ask your customers when we meet.
Strategic Story Planning is a critical first step in the development of the story and in proving your products and services are the only ones to use.
Let’s chat and start planning your next Customer Success Story.
I would love to chat and understand your needs, answer any questions and help you to create a plan to move forward.
To schedule a mutually convenient time to chat please click the link below-
Mobile: 0438 752 596
Or, to continue this conversation please complete the form below.
I look forward to catching up.
Alistair Gray – The Good News Writer
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