People love reading stories about other people. With the right understanding and approach, you can use this fact to help promote the services offered by your company.
Every day, your electric utility or telecommunications company is making a powerful impact on the communities you serve. One of the best ways to communicate that fact is by telling the stories of real people who benefit from the services you provide.
Whether it be in your newsletter, on your website or through your social media channels, the power of storytelling can help you relate important messages about your company and increase the power of your brand.
Where do you begin? Perhaps you can think of plenty of individuals and businesses who use your services to improve their lives, but you aren’t sure how to capture an interview with them. The following list will help you present those stories in a way that engages your readers and relates the important truth that your company is changing lives for the better.
First and foremost, train yourself to be a good listener. Never go into an interview thinking you know the whole story (even when you probably do). Be prepared with good questions, but always be open to letting the interviewee take you somewhere you didn’t expect to go.
Tip: Use a digital recorder to capture the interview so you can concentrate on the conversation and not extensive note-taking.
Train yourself to be genuinely interested in people. When you find people and what they do fascinating, your subjects will sense it and open up to you. It will make your writing flow easier. And your readers will become more immersed in what you present to them. Remember, you’re not just passing along facts; you’re educating, informing and engaging your customers and prospects.
Tip: Do some research on your subject prior to the interview. Learning something about who they are and what they do will help you relate to one another.
Tell The Story
And finally, be a storyteller. The storyteller is not the story. The storyteller is not the audience. The storyteller is the conduit through which a well-told story flows. While you don’t have to follow the ubiquitous writing advice of “write drunk and edit sober,” you should adopt the spirit of that quote — write with great passion, but come back to your work with a critical eye and rewrite where necessary to make it better. If you see a paragraph where it’s all about you, kill it. Too many writers create pieces that scream, “Look at me, I am a writer, look what I’ve written!” Good writers get out of the way and let the story be the star.
Tip: Ask a co-worker or a friend to read your story before you publish it. Beyond looking for typos or grammatical errors, ask them to review the piece as a whole. Did the story flow well? Did it make sense? Was it well-structured? Was it focused on the subject and not the writer?
When you write about people, your customers and prospects will be drawn into the stories — and through those stories they will become better acquainted with your company and how your services can enrich their lives.