Don’t Deliver Content. Tell Stories.

Tell stories. It's more effective than delivering messages.

People won’t read all the way through your 250-word press release, but they will read your 1000-word story. Can your content marketing writer tell stories for you?

Susan Straight, professor of creative writing at University of California at Riverside, posted an editorial in the Los Angeles Times:

Over the years, some people have said to me that it’s frivolous to teach writing — compared with a practical skill like auto mechanics or biology or engineering. But I say that each of my students who learned to tell a story, who taught someone else how to tell a story, who read a story and thought about it and kept it inside until its meaning was clear, learned something vital. The world runs on stories. It is how we humans survive.

What I tried to give them, and what I hope to give my students this fall, is the power that comes with the freedom to write about themselves, to tell their own stories and the stories of their communities, populated by people they know, real or imagined.

Tell stories. It’s more effective than delivering messages.

Can you believe that, as a marketing manager, it is part of your job to tell stories that start conversations with your prospects? Your writers should tell your story as well.

How else are you going to do it, and not turn them off? To paraphrase Susan, “your marketing effort runs on stories. It is how your company survives.”

When you hire a content marketing writer, ask for a story among the writing samples. Case studies and customer success stories are fertile ground for this, but not all case studies make it to the promised land of good stories.

“Stop me if you’ve heard this one:”

Three marketing managers are walking down a road in Texas when they come to a bridge over a creek…

photo credit: ardenswayoflife


Author: John White

John White of venTAJA Marketing is a content marketing writer for technology companies. He posts about technology writing from the perspective of the marketing manager. It’s a dirty job, but somebody has to do it. Download his eBook, “10 Questions to Ask When Hiring Your Content Marketing Writer.”