Frankly, I’m sick of talk about “storytelling.” All brands and marketers and ad people think they’re now in the business of storytelling, to the point where the word is meaningless. Even worse are people who use the word “story” as a concept the way snotty, wanna-be aristocrats use the word “sport.”
Thankfully, we get none of that in Paul Smith’s Sell With A Story: How to Capture Attention, Build Trust and Close the Sale.
Smith doesn’t come at his subject from a marketing perspective: He’s a salesman in the classic sense, building one-on-one rapport with customers before and after the sale. So his tips break down how to create stories and craft them to get attention, whether it’s from one customer or an audience at a presentation. Smith shows how poignant it can be when you’re being relatable and human even while convincing someone to buy.
Not everyone is a natural-born storyteller, the way not everyone is a natural-born salesperson. But if you work in advertising or marketing, you’re always having to convince someone to come around to your point of view, no matter what job you do. Sell With A Story is a potent reminder of that. It’s a great read for anyone in business — and it manages to avoid the “story” clichés so many advertising poseurs use.
Special thanks to FSB Associates for providing me with a review copy.