- A great story is true. Not necessarily because it’s factual, but because it’s consistent and authentic. Customers are too good at sniffing out inconsistencies for a marketer to get away with a story that is not authentic.
- Great stories are subtle. The fewer details spelled out, the more powerful the story becomes. Allowing people to draw their own conclusions is far more effective than announcing the punch line.
- Great stories don’t appeal to logic, but they often appeal to our senses. People decide if they like someone after just a sniff.
- Great stories succeed because they are able to capture the imagination of large or important audiences.
- Great stories are rarely aimed at everyone. Average people are good at ignoring you. Average people have too many different points of view about life and average people are by and large satisfied. If you need to water down your story to appeal to everyone, it will appeal to no one. The most effective stories match the world view of a tiny audience and then that tiny audience spreads the story.
- Most of all, great stories agree with our world view. The best stories don’t teach people anything new. Instead, the best stories agree with what the audience already believes and makes the members of the audience feel smart and secure when reminded how right they were in the first place.
Summarised from Seth Godin’s All Marketers Are Liars.