Story = Marketing

Abel Martinez Volunteer Docent Guide Piedras Blancas Lightstation, San Simeon, CA telling a storyMarketing is having a great story and telling it.

Your story is what you do and how you do it. It’s your history, your culture and your mission. It’s your vision, your dreams and your plans. It’s who you work with, how you interact and what you do for them.

Your story is what makes people want to work with you. It’s what turns you into a person or company who is likeable and trustworthy.

Predictability = Brand Image
People want your story and how you tell it to be predictable. They want to know it’s you, every time.  They don’t want to confuse you with someone else and they want to follow your continuing narrative.

Environment = Media
Your people want to come across it where they are looking. They want it in a way they can relate and with language they understand.  Which media you choose is based on where your audience hangs out and which ones make you comfortable.

Team Building = Content
Your people want to know that you are there for them and that there are others there, too. They want a conversation and they want to be heard. Everything you say should speak to them and help them know you care. That, of course, assumes you do care.

Well Paid = Business Model
Your people want what’s fair for both of you. They want to reciprocate when you give them good stuff. Your price, your products and your offer are all part of your story. They tell people if they belong working with you.

That’s marketing, branding, usp, tactics, social media, and strategy all rolled into one story. Your story isn’t just about what you say, it’s what you do and what others say about you.  You can’t just make it up. Not any more.

The basics of your story answer these questions:

Who are you and what do you do?
With whom do you work best?
What do you do for them?
Where do you reach them?
How do you relate to them?
What do they want to hear from you?
What’s your offer to help them?
What’s your core message?
How can you wrap that to make it easily communicated?

Bernadette Jiwa tells us, in today’s post, what goes into our brand story and how everything we do communicates it. http://thestoryoftelling.com/20-elements-of-brand-story/

Here’s Your Effortless Marketing Plan Worksheet. Your Story and How You Tell It

Answering those questions will give you a start on your story and ideas about how and where to tell it.

photo by Mike Baird

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Start the Ball Rolling

I love checklists

One of the first moves I made when I decided to work towards making my business more effortless (although I didn’t call it that back then) was to create a little checklist on an index card for the Crystal Clear Lunch & Learn series I was running.

I listed the 4 things I needed to bring:

Signs I had great signs with movable direction arrows and a white board area for writing in the day’s topic and speaker

Cookies  You gotta feed people something at a Lunch & Learn.

Handouts and other resources pertaining to the topic

Supplies This was a prepacked (ie, it wasn’t emptied) bag with a table cloth, cups, tea bags, sugar etc.) and my business cards and other marketing material, because the series was a marketing initiative.

On the back, I had the phone number for the local café where I picked up a premade carafe of coffee.   They made the coffee and supplied the little milk and creamers.  I think buying the coffee is worth it just so I don’t have to worry about dairy products.  I had the phone number of the venue.   I started to call to check in the morning of.  A couple of times there was a hitch. This meant I had a few hours to straighten it out.

That little index card meant more than not just forgetting something on the day, which would not be catastrophic, merely annoying.  Much more than that, it meant I didn’t have to think about it until a few hours before.

I took the time to think about what I wanted to get out of the series and what was needed to make that happen.  By recording it and having it available, I didn’t have to think about it again.

The heavens didn’t open, angels didn’t sing, but I sure recognized a tool that saved me time, cleared brain space and optimized the situation.

I made a checklist a few years ago during an HR workshop. I won a coffee card for it, but that’s not the point here, although it probably put the whole thing in a more favourable light.  I spent a few more hours adding in pages about our mission, our policies and privacy.  Since that time I have used it every time we have a new person start here.

It works.  Once again, I don’t have to think about it until it’s time.  The rest of the team hear about our mission, our policies and privacy, again (we have an open office).  Everyone knows what we are doing here, how they fit in and how everyone else fits in; and they know everyone else does, too.

The New Employee Induction Tool is for sale on our resources page. A free Employee Handbook Template that is very comprehensive and a free sample Employee Evaluation are available for download, too.

This is just the beginning.  We will have many more resources for you – paid and unpaid.  Here’s to making Your Business Effortless!

What checklists do you use?  What checklists would you like to use?  What do you do over and over again that should have a checklist?

Do you want to craft Your Effortless Business?

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