How to Tell a Story in Direct Marketing

If you’ve got a great product to sell, you should have a great story to tell, without exaggeration or hype. The Purple Cow best-selling author and marketing guru Seth Godin sums it up:

“Stories make it easier to understand the world. Stories are the only way we know to spread an idea. Marketers didn’t invent storytelling. They just perfected it.”

The concept is as old as cave people crouched around a fire, swapping stories on a chilly post Ice Age evening. Storytelling helps bring things to life. They evoke an emotional response, as you can put yourself in the situation or relate it to someone you know or an experience you have had.

So what’s this got to do with direct marketing?
Emotions are at the root of why people buy many things. A purchase decision for a basic need might be fact-driven, while something we really want – like a shiny new car, the latest iPhone or dream vacation is driven by emotion.

Here are 5 emotions that drive us to buy what we want:


What do your customers love? Their family, pets, career, hobbies, free time, fellow man, God and country, themselves? Love is a powerful emotion; people can spend a lifetime and great sums of money pursuing their true love.


Think back to your childhood. Remember how you felt when you hit that home run, aced that test or won that award? Flash forward to today when you drive into the company parking lot in your shiny new car. If pride is a sin, it sure feels good, doesn’t it?

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