October 23, 2011

Appreciation Marketing – Telling Your Story

We have all been told that we must be able to tell our story.  This is the tale of how we come to be where we are today; this is the chain of events that led us to be where we are now.  It is the story of who we are and what we did to become what we represent in business as well as in our personal life.

You must realize that the story that you tell is very important; it is what you utilize to get others to know you, and it should make others believe in you.  It must be true, and it must be believable to others.  The facts must be consistent from one telling to another, and they must be simple for you to relate.  My daddy always told me that when you tell the truth, you will easily remember what you say.

You must also realize that the manner of the telling is as important as the story itself.  You must tell your story in a believable manner, and you must keep it simple.  You also should keep it short enough that others will not lose interest during the telling and so that others will be able to relay the story to others.  Consistent facts will keep your story the same as it is retold.

How you tell your story also includes that you do not dominate the conversation.  If you are speaking with someone one-on-one, you must allow the other person to tell you about themselves.  You should always ask the other person about their story and how they came to be where they are now.  Show interest and listen to the other person.  The more that you listen, and learn, the better your networking relationship will be.

Listening, and learning, is appreciation marketing at work.  If someone believes that you are only interested in telling your story, and not hearing about them, you will never have their respect.  Your networking partners will know your story includes your desire, and practice, to learn their stories.  If you do not know someone else’s story, how can you include them in your referral process?

Of course, a polite manner and genuine interest are necessary to establish, and maintain, a networking partnership.  Remind yourself to treat others as you want them to treat you; if you want them to listen to and remember your story, you must listen to and remember theirs.  Perhaps you can help each other to refine your stories, thereby mutually helping each other to be better.  You are partners after all.

Your story should also include how you utilize your product or service in the business that makes that product or service available to others.  In other words, how do you use your product or service to sell your product or service?  Examples of how you do that should be included in your story.  Last but not least, your story should be personable, something that can relate to others.

So what is your story?  How do you tell it to others?  If you don’t have a story that you share with others, why not?  Your comments are always welcome here, or email me at Jim@SOC4Now.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.  If we can share our stories, that would be valuable time spent by both of us.

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