“60 Minutes” Creator Don Hewitt just died recently at the age of 86.
I read an interesting article about him on Foxnews.com that explains this idea of wrapping your ideas in stories. (See here for the full story.)
The part I want you to hear from that article is this…
“He made his mark in the late 1960s when CBS agreed to try his idea of a one-hour broadcast that mixed hard news and feature stories. The television newsmagazine was born on Sept. 24, 1968.
“He dreamed of a television version of Life, the dominant magazine of the mid-20th century, where interviews with entertainers could co-exist with investigations that exposed corporate malfeasance.
Listen as he reveals his formula for wrapping ideas in stories…
“’The formula is simple,’ he wrote in a memoir in 2001, ‘and it’s reduced to four words every kid in the world knows: Tell me a story. It’s that easy. Even the people who wrote the Bible knew that when you deal with issues, you tell stories. The issue was evil; the story was Noah.
“’60 Minutes’ won 73 Emmys, 13 DuPont/Columbia University Awards and nine Peabody Awards during Hewitt’s stewardship, which ended in 2004.”
Did you catch his formula?
Tell me a story.
Have an issue you want to bring up? Wrap it in a story!
In an earlier article, that appeared in Reader’s Digest, Hewitt described it this way…
“I’ve had producers say, ‘We’ve got to do something on acid rain.’ I say, ‘Hold it. Acid rain is not a story. Acid rain is a topic. We don’t do topics. Find me someone who has to deal with the problem of acid rain. Now you have a story.”
You need to find stories from your life and other’s lives that you can use to explain your business, your products, etc.
And don’t forget to share the story of what’s going on in your life and the life of your business!
Want another simple “recipe” on how to wrap your ideas with powerful stories?
If you want to hold your prospects attention with every point you want to make, then do this…
Make your point, then give a story to illustrate it or apply it.
1. A plumber can share stories of clients who had actual problems that needed to be solved instead of just speaking of the generic services he offers.
The same plumber could share about how/why he got into the plumbing busines. He can share stories of homeowners who increased the value of their homes by installing new sinks/fixtures.
2. A restaurant owner can share memories of their grandparent’s or parent’s cooking. He/she could share stories of the daily adventures of all happens in their restaurant. (Think what you would include if you were filming a reality tv show of that restaurant.) The owner might include (with permission) personal stories of the chefs or waiters and waitresses.
3. A home designer might tell the stories of how he/she worked for a home owner to take their home from blah to fabulous. The designer might share stories he/she finds online of people who share favorite memories of different rooms in their childhood homes. The designer could use that to teach/explain why the design and content of a room is so important not just for asthetic reasons, but also emotional reasons.
Anyway, these are just off the top of my head, but hopefully you get the point! 🙂
I would really encourage you to re-read the quote from Hewitt about the difference between a topic and a story. Also re-read what he describes about how the Bible teaches issues through stories and his point about acid rain and “finding the story”. Really think this over and let it sink in.
Then try this and see how it helps you to better express your ideas and touch your prospects hearts with your content marketing!
Coming On Wednesday, July 14th:
Using content marketing can be powerful – whether it’s text, audio, or video. But if people won’t read it, listen to it, or watch it, then what good is it?
On Wednesday, I’ll share some ideas about how to capture people’s attention so they feel compelled to digest it.
Spread the word! Link to it. Tweet about it. Blog about it. Send smoke signals. Whatever! Here’s how…
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