Readers and viewers want to feel a human connection. They need personal stories about people and about you. It doesn’t matter what form the stories come in.
We’ve come a long way from the days when ad men (and they were usually men) could represent products or services with snappy jingles and cute copy. Online marketing today includes plenty of content in all forms, all of which communicate personality through stories:
- Web pages
- Social media profiles and updates
- E-books, white papers and digital downloads
- Video clips
Obviously, if you’re an independent professional such as a doctor, psychologist, any kind of health professional seeking clients, you’ve got to have your own personality in your content marketing to stand out from all the others. Same for lawyers, authors, speakers. Yet how many professionals share their personal stories on the Web?
Under 1%, I’d make a wild guess. Most professionals I help with online content marketing don’t share anything personal online. Even their About pages are written in the third person, like a professional resume. When’s the last time you read a resume and felt a warm desire to call someone up?
My point is this: most of us miss a big opportunity to strike a chord with people because we’re not sharing our stories.
Why did you become a doctor, lawyer, Indian chief? That’s what people want to know. What’s your back-story?
Not only are many people uncomfortable about sharing online, they tell old stories to themselves they don’t want anyone else to know. So they clam up or limit their story to where they went to school and where they worked.
Yes, but why did you go to school and study what you did? Why did you become this kind of professional and not another one? What drives you? What’s your purpose in life, and in your work?
What stories do you tell yourself about the work you do? What’s the contribution you’re making?
I believe that most of us are shy about telling our stories because we have old, outdated stories and we don’t revise them to reflect our current stage of development.
I also believe that whatever online marketing we do is greatly affected by our inner stories. You can’t hide online. Your true self shows up. So you need to look at your inner stories first. It will lead to more fascinating online stories in your content marketing.