What would make you more likely to purchase something from a company?

This approach?

Here at ABC Company our product is the best… we’re so great… buy from us.

Or this approach?

You have a problem. ABC Company has a solution. This solution will make your life better.

I think most people would choose the second option, which is the basic premise of story marketing.

Story marketing is the process of attracting and engaging customers through a story, but that story is theirs, not yours. Instead of the ‘buy our product’ messages of typical marketing campaigns, story marketing tells the customer’s story and motivates them to connect with your company as a solution to their problem or a way to a better life.

Velsoft Training Materials’ latest softskills course, Story Marketing for Small Businesses, discusses how to make the customer the hero of the story.

Customers buy products and boost profits, making a company successful. Messages need to be about the customer’s needs and wants, not about product, price point, or company values. Unfortunately, many small businesses only think about the customer in terms of how lucky the purchaser would be to have the product, service, or opportunity the company is selling.

Story marketing works because it’s about the customer. It shows them why they need your product or service, and forges a connection with them.

In Marketing 101: Make the Customer the Hero, written for inc.com, Geoffrey James says: “Go through all your sales and marketing materials and expunge every story that’s about you. Only describe your company and products in the context of how a customer used them, or could use them, to win. In short, make your customers into the hero of YOUR story as well as their story. When those two stories align, you’ll make the sale.”

Kevin Ryan, director of marketing at LinkedIn Marketing and Sales Solutions, writes in It pays to make your customer the hero in B2B marketing: “Putting the customer at the heart of your marketing efforts, and creating emotive content driven by their needs, will be the difference between good and great campaigns.”

Business advisor and digital marketing consultant Chris Brogan, in his recent blog Marketing is About Connecting With Your Customer’s Story, said: “Marketing can’t be about features and product descriptions alone. It must shift to telling your customer’s story. Not your product’s story. You have to empower the customer with what you sell.”

Trainers — get Velsoft’s Story Marketing for Small Businesses course now, and teach others how tell their customers’ stories!