Do You Grab Your Audience’s Attention?

At Michael Penland’s last event, I watched Glenn Turner hold an audience spellbound. You could see people leaning forward, hanging on his every word. While he was a good speaker and had good content, he didn’t excel over the rest of the speakers in those areas.

A few of the other speakers had better more instantly usuable content in my opinion. Some of the best Internet marketers were there…and I was shocked at what a few of them shared for the price (find out more about Michael Penland’s next event here which I will be speaking at again).

What did he have that held attention better than the top Internet marketers? He told simple stories…about himself, about animals, and about those around him. He is a master storyteller. I watched every minute he was on the stage holding attention like none other.

Not only do stories hold people’s attention better than anything else, they also get the point across. You might forget the speaker’s three points within a couple of hours. You remember the story that resonates with you.

Tell me a story if you want me to pay attention to what you have to say. This applies to every form of content you create, including:

Sales Letters
Websites
Emails
Blog Postings
Public Speaking
Teleconferences
Webinars
Videos

Tell stories if you want people to pay attention. I take on a few copywriting clients at times (it’s not my main business although I enjoy taking on a very profitable project now and then). A key element to copywriting for any client is to look for the story. You become a detective. You interview the business owner, their employees, and their clients. While you’re picking up other information along the way, your goal is to find the story.

What happened? Why was the product or service developed? What is an authentic story that created the business? What results have people achieved?

What’s the attention grabbing story that makes people pay attention?

Not only do stories hold people’s attention better than anything else, they also get the point across. You might forget the speaker’s three points within a couple of hours. You remember the story that resonates with you.

That’s why you see me tell about how I lost one job after another before I started online. I talk about delivering pizzas for Little Caesar’s. I tell about how my wife and I looked through the couch for change to go to McDonalds. I talk about all the failed business opportunities, door-to-door selling, and network marketing that buried us in debt.

Then how I came online…and succeeded. It’s embarressing. Yet it’s my 100% true story…and it’s a marketing advantage because people remember it.

My most popular article of all time was the “Internet lifestyle.” It was about how you could live anywhere and run an Internet business. It talked about the cow named Oscar that was my nearest neighbor (we have since moved). People forgot the article title.

They remembered the cow. They remembered the basic message…you can run an Internet business from anywhere. The message of the story beat the step-by-step instructions. It beat the “great copywriting” in other articles. Just a simple story about a cow better shared the message I wanted people to hear…

Are you using stories in your sales copy, on your blog, and in your emails? If you’re not, you’re missing out on a good portion of your money. Your readers don’t want to be lectured. They want to be entertained. What story do you have that shares the message?

I shouldn’t have to say this, but I’ve been around long enough to know I do. Make sure you’re sharing a TRUE story…not a made up one. Some marketers find it so easy to exaggerate and lie throughout their stories. They make up stories about “leaked documents.” They add a couple of extra zeros to the amount they made or the weight they lost.

In fact, I think more marketers give up their integrity in this area than virtually any other area I’ve seen. Your copywriter might tell you…well if we just add this little detail to your story, it will sell more. I agree. Details sell. The big question is whether the detail is true or not. Is it worth giving up your integrity for a little bump in response?

Do a little investigative work. Have someone else interview you about your business. Find the selling story. Discovering this one principle will improve everything you write or produce instantly.

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