Don’t Sell Me, Tell Me

Don’t Sell Me, Tell Me: How to use storytelling to connect with the hearts and wallets of a hungry audience

by Greg Koorhan

Greg Koorhan’s main message is to “stop sounding like everyone else and tell your own, unique story.”

“A study by the Emory Institute in Atlanta… found that just thinking about an action triggers the same emotional and sensory area of the brain that performing the action does… So by telling a story associated with you or your business, you can trigger the emotions that make your customer feel, even for a brief moment, as if they’ve experienced the same benefit… Assuming it’s a good experience, don’t you think they’ll want more?”

“When looking at data, the language areas of the brain light up, but not the emotional and sensory areas. These areas are triggered only by stories. This means that your story can engage your audience in ways data can’t… When data and stories are used together, audiences are moved both emotionally and intellectually.”

“Your Story IS Your Brand… Your brand is actually tied closely to your values. And by nurturing your values, you develop a theme. And out of your theme grows your story… Start with your values, then your theme, character archetype and emotional tone. Once you’ve got the elements of your story in place, your entire marketing and advertising platform can grow out of it.”

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Everybody Writes

everybody-writes

Everybody Writes: Your Go-To Guide to Creating Ridiculously Good Content

by Ann Handley

Everybody Writes is a catchy title, although a more accurate one would be Writing Tips for Content Marketing.

Here’s the secret formula: “The multiplication signs are important, because if the value of any one of these things (Utility, Inspiration, or Empathy) is zero, then the sum of your content is a big fat zero, too… Utility x Inspiration x Empathy = Quality Content.” I think she means product—not sum—but I like the idea.

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Traction: A Startup Guide to Getting Customers

traction

Traction: A Startup Guide to Getting Customers

by Gabriel Weinberg and Justin Mares

“Almost every failed startup has a product. What failed startups don’t have are enough customers.”

“Traction is a sign that something is working. If you charge for your product, it means customers are buying. If your product is free, it’s a growing user base.” Gabriel Weinberg and Justin Mares draw from their own startup experience as well as interviews with some 40 other founders and marketing experts. The book starts with five foundation chapters followed by chapters explaining each of the 19 traction channels.

PayPay founder Peter Thiel says, “It is very likely that one channel is optimal. Most businesses actually get zero distribution channels to work. Poor distribution—not product—is the number one cause of failure.” Continue reading

The New Rules of Marketing and PR

the-new-rules-of-marketing-and-pr-4th

The New Rules of Marketing and PR, Fourth Edition

by David Meerman Scott

David Meerman Scott is an experienced marketing executive who says that interruption-based marketing techniques are ineffective. “I’ve done it the old way. It doesn’t work anymore.” Under the new rules, marketers publish their own content and speak directly with buyers.

“The Internet has made public relations public again… Your newsroom is for your buyers, not just the media… By building a media room that targets buyers, you will not only enhance those pages as a powerful marketing tool but also make a better media site for journalists.” Continue reading

Content Marketing: Think Like a Publisher

content-marketing-rebecca-lieb

Content Marketing: Think Like a Publisher—How to Use Content to Market Online and in Social Media

by Rebecca Lieb

“Instead of advertising, the shift is toward publishing… Companies are sharing: knowledge, expertise, and how-to. They know customers who might not have 30 seconds to spend on watching one of their ads might gladly surrender 30 minutes to dive into truly useful content.”

Continuing the ‘think like a publisher’ theme, an editorial calendar “ties that broader schedule together with specifics such as holidays, trade shows, company announcements, events (such as webinars), or new product launches… The editorial calendar also serves as an invaluable map for repurposing content.” Continue reading