Stories are how we connect with & understand one another.
“The one thing you have that nobody else has is you. Your voice, your mind, your story, your vision. So write and draw and build and play and dance and live as only you can."
- Neil Gaiman, Make Good Art
If you can uncover your own story and tell it compellingly, you'll stand out from the crowd (and among many other benefits, you won’t have to compete on price again). And if you infuse your web copy and newsletters and social media updates with stories, your writing will automatically be much more engaging and memorable.
Most importantly though, once we uncover the story that's at the heart of your business, you'll be able to express what you stand for with a clarity and conviction that draws your perfect-fit clients towards you.
"I feel that I've gained so much clarity on how I want my business to evolve, who I want to serve and the 'why' behind it all. I believe that getting to the heart of the 'story' behind the business has been transformational as I now have a much clearer sense of how I want to move forward.
I would recommend Sophy's services to any creative entrepreneur who is feeling stuck and is not sure how to move from what is in their head to putting it all down into words (and actions) in a way that feels genuine, accurate and marketable.”
This is about much more than just sprinkling some amusing or engaging anecdotes into your copy. As Bernadette Jiwa warns:
"We mistakenly assume that marketing is about adapting our story according to what most people want to hear. We go off in search of an angle that will attract the most attention today. As a result, we don't devote enough time and resources to reflecting on how we can resonate with the right people - just as we are. We fail to harness the true potential of our narrative."
Story Power is designed to make sure that you do harness the true potential of your narrative - so that you can own and express your story fully and ensure that your message gets heard by those who need it most.
As a result, you'll feel more certainty about the direction of your business, and more empowered to speak up and start being the change you want to see in the world.
But one of the hardest things to do well as a creative entrepreneur is to tell our own story.
In my work as a business coach, I see so many small business websites where the copy is flat, generic and just not that engaging.
One former workshop participant was an artist who, in person, was quirky (to the point of eccentric), stylish and passionate about her art. However, in her web copy she was trying so hard to come across as professional that she ironed out everything that was sparky, memorable and unique about herself and her business.
Another former client, a coach, was a highly proficient writer who had previously been a lecturer, and who found it incredibly hard not to keep slipping into formal academic language in her website. Every time she cited studies and referenced journal articles, she felt like she was communicating her expert status, but actually she was stifling her audience's connection with her subject matter.
People want to understand what your business would actually do for them - and stories are a
fantastic way to flesh that out and make your results seem real, concrete and something they could experience too.
Stories make people feel something - which helps them to understand why they might want what you do.
One of my former clients is an osteopath. I've never been treated by an osteopath, and I was struggling to understand exactly how she worked with her clients, until she told me a story about working on a man with quite a high-powered city job - and how, as her hands were working on his body, she felt a sense of deep, intense stillness within him. Even though everything she knew about his life and job was at odds with this stillness, she asked him, "have you been thinking of becoming a monk?". As the words left her mouth, she wondered if he would think she was crazy, but instead he looked astonished and asked, "how did you know?"
This story made me go from not being able to picture what she does for her clients to wishing I could have a session with her, and wondering what her hands would discover about me.
Stories have a visceral effect on us - they're not real, but they feel real.
When people have an MRI scan while they read a short story, the areas of the brain that light up when they read about an activity are identical to those that light up when they actually experience it. That's the power you can tap into by using stories when you talk about your business.
Even if an entrepreneur has beautiful visual branding and a stunning site, their message will fall flat without using the power of storytelling to draw people in and make them eager to know what happens next.
These days I'm a business mentor and copy coach, working with web designers, e-course creators and coaches - but in my former working life I spent twenty years working as a writer and editor. I know how stories work from the inside out.
I've taken everything I learned as a publisher, book festival director, short story prize manager; all the lessons I gleaned from working with writers like Margaret Atwood, Ian Rankin, Irvine Welsh and Ali Smith; and everything I know from my years helping novice authors improve their first novels - and I've applied it to the world of online business writing.
Online businesses are built on words...
From your web copy to your Facebook status updates to your ads to your sales conversations, your business functions through words and stories. Understanding how to make your story work to your advantage is infinitely more powerful than hiring a copywriter to write a particular sales page for you - this is a core business skill that you can use every day.
How does Story Power work?
You'll send me the link to your website and I'll see how you're using stories in your copy at the moment. As I work my way through your site, I'll highlight where I think stories would help you to communicate more effectively - and if you've buried any gems in there, I'll encourage you to give them more prominence.
I'll send you a short video report on my findings, and a set of questions for you to answer before we have our first meeting. These questions will start to draw out your key stories, along with a sense of your values, purpose and the vision you have for what your business can achieve.
Then we'll meet for a 90 minute 1:1 session by Zoom video, so that I can draw out more details and nuances from your stories. We will also discuss the central story you want to tell about yourself and your business - and how this story can form the basis of your whole business vision and purpose. You'll get a recording of this call, so you can keep coming back to it for inspiration. In additon, we'll discuss how this story fits with the other stories your business tells, through your pricing, your services and your visual branding.
Then you'll go off and do some writing homework in a shared Google Drive folder, after which we'll have our second 1:1 session, this time focused around live-editing your new story-infused copy.
As a result of Story Power:
you'll be really clear about how to express what you stand for, where you're headed and why and what's been the making of you
you’ll be able to bring together the different threads of your business, and the winding path you took to get here, in a way that instantly makes sense to potential clients or customers
you'll have a framework for consistently articulating, living and leading with your story
you'll end up with a powerful sense of identity, and no need to worry about differentiating yourself from the competition
Your investment: £350 (roughly $500 USD)
The next step is simple - just book a short free consultation call with me to be sure we're a good fit and that Story Power is the right move for you at the moment: