Posts by Park

The 10 brand story elements of REI’s disruptive #OptOutside Black Friday campaign

  When I was a kid growing up North of Seattle, my dad would take us downtown to Recreational Equipment, Inc. (REI). This was in the 1970’s, and REI was nothing more than a store in a dank basement with outdoor wear stacked in piles on folding tables. I remember an overhead water pipe leaking on a down jacket in the middle of the table, and nobody much cared. The character of the place was simply a reflection of the rugged…

How to use the Hero’s Journey to create epic business stories for your B2B marketing

Have you ever struggled to get an important concept across to your peers? We’ve all been there. The powerpoint that sucked. The big idea that didn’t penetrate smaller minds. The blown story. The unfocused presentation. There is a foolproof way to bring meaning to every pitch. It is the universal story pattern discovered by American mythologist Joseph Campbell called the monomyth, or the hero’s journey. This is the best animation I’ve seen that quickly takes you by the hand through…

10 reasons/ways to be a more powerful B2B marketing storyteller: #6 hurts

I have a business storytelling brother from a different mother, and we grew up across the great pond from each other. His name is Bryan Adams, founder of Ph-Creative in London and Liverpool, UK, and author of  Getting Goosebumps: A pragmatic guide to effective inbound marketing. Bryan joins me this week on our first simulcast podcast. You can hear it on Business of Story podcast or Getting Goosebumps. (We’re like WWII allies battling the tyranny of of bad business communications for the…

Why you should think like a screenwriter to humanize your B2B content marketing

I love this poster for Justin Trevor Winters’ new movie. It depicts Richard Dreyfuss’ character as a retired high school gym teacher willing to do whatever it takes to leave a legacy. Oh, the indignant desperation. This could also be a movie poster of a brand manager or content marketer ready to end it all. Do you know that feeling? You dutifully write content, publish blogs and produce videos for the B2B marketing of your professional services firm, but no…

The step-by-step process for crafting your brand story

While storytelling has become ubiquitous in advertising, and numerous books tell you why stories are important for your brand, I can actually show you how to craft and tell compelling stories that sell. “He who tells sells,” is a universal marketing mantra for a reason. Stories work, but they take work. I am finishing my book, Story Built, which will  help you create a more authentic and powerful brand story through the proven 10-step method called the Story Cycle. The…

The 1 rule you must obey when crafting brand stories

Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated. Confucius told us that centuries ago. I learned this lesson, AGAIN, yesterday. I was teaching storytelling to 7th and 8th graders in a South Phoenix school. Talking about a tough room. My audience was 15 kids from a rough neighborhood. My pal, Marilyn Seymann, works with them after school three days a week, and asked if I would teach them something about story. The plan was to underscore the…

A simple 3-step strategy that will inspire your business storytelling

Plus 6 great story insights and one terrific quote Some of my clients and students tell me that they don’t lead interesting enough lives to have great stories. Nothing ever happens to them. Do you feel like that? My guest on this episode of the Business of Story podcast, Margot Leitman, author, teacher, professional storyteller and Moth GrandSLAM champ., provides a three-step process to pull your story together. You just fill in the blanks: I am ____________. I was ____________.…

The 6 personal stories you need to know how to tell for your professional services firm

There is no such thing as business-to-business marketing. Or B2B. It’s the greatest fallacy in our advertising vernacular. Because no matter whether you’re selling to a c-suite suit, trying to persuade a rank-and-file employee to do something, or engaging a business customer, you are really marketing B2P: “business-to-people.” Or, if you dare, H2H: “human-to-human.” We humans, especially those associated with your professional services firm, who you market to with a B2B mindset, love stories. In fact, science has proven that our…

New book efficiently delivers productivity advice

My head has been spinning with To Do’s. I think much of my anxiety from running a small business comes from not having my act together. Instead of following a regimen of neatly compiled goals, priorities and tasks, my approach is more of a whirling dervish of activity with my heart in the right place, but my mind everywhere else. Apparently, the universe thinks so, too. Instead of hanging out and imbibing last night, which is typical of a Friday evening for me,…

5 proven elements to a powerful business story

Back in the day, I wrote and produced hundreds of radio spots. Some hysterical. Some thought-provoking. Some duds. Ok, several. This one was killer: Michael Angelo painting the Sistine Chapel fighting a leaky roof. The spot was for Robinett Roofing, and it struck such a chord in listeners that calls quadrupled to the client. Even an irate Intel executive called me saying I was making fun of Italians and Catholics. I wasn’t. I was just selling roofs. I’ve had the same experience with TV commercials. We’d create two…

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