In a recent blog post, New York City digital marketing firm owner and business coach Brooke B. Sellas illuminated one key idea behind her “Think Conversation, Not Campaign.™” strategy.

“Use your emotional appeal to get remembered,” she writes. “In a sea of sameness, that’s the one thing people (and competitors) can’t rip off, steal, or take away from you: your story.”

Sellas picks up the mantra of interpersonal connection as a key sales strategy by outlining the following steps for procuring clients through storytelling, either face-to-face or in a group.

1. Start with their story.

Sellas asks questions to get people talking about themselves. She suggests that salespeople use prospects’ and clients’ own storytelling as a building block for deeper conversation.

2. Tell your story.

Spend time thinking of pivotal anecdotes from your own life. Consider experiences that are heartfelt, human and transformative. Then, cherry-pick which story to tell depending on your audience. Pick stories that are true, and that illustrate “actionable results.”

3. Perfect interactive storytelling.

For Sellas, this is the silent sales seduction: The two-way conversation. Never tell personal stories in a business setting that are one-sided. Instead, invite your listener or audience to help develop the story by pausing from time to time to ask interactive questions.

“Ask questions that can help you better understand your would-be customer,” she writes, “and tie them to your story’s outcome.”

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