You’re on the Wellness Leadership journey. You are building your business, you want to increase your clientele. But there is a gap between you and your prospective clients: they do not yet know you, like you or trust you.
That’s a big gap – how do you cross it? How do you earn their trust?
We are moving into times where people are sick and tired of being sold to. Our world seems to be made up of people shouting at us and trying to sell us things wherever we turn. It seems that no forum is safe from pushy people selling us things. So how do you cut through the noise, the apathy, the cynicism that people are saturated with? How do you tell people what you have to offer them without selling to them? How do you create authentic, trust-worthy connections with people so that you can help them? People want to trust, they need to feel connected; they need help. They are just more cautious about where they put their trust, and rightly so. You feel the same too, don’t you?
So, you need to get your prospective clients to trust you. How do you stand out, how do you differentiate yourself? How do you earn their trust?
Here’s how. You tell stories.
Unlike other forms of receiving information and communication, story-telling is the ONLY way to activate the specific part of the brain so that a listener turns the story of the story-teller into their own idea and experience.
This is really important. our brains are wired to understand the world and ourselves through story. We are not wired to absorb information through instruction, preaching or advertising. Think for a moment about your favourite teacher. They shared something of themselves with you; they would wrap their message in a story – and you got the feeling that they had been where you are now. What about The Bible, The Mahabharata, The Bhagavad Gita? All stories. Stories engage us, we are interested, we feel connected, both to the story and to the story-teller. All of a sudden, we don’t feel like we’re alone in our experience of life, in our suffering. And, depending upon the story, we may feel hopeful, inspired and motivated to change our lives for the better.
When you are crafting a story for your audience, your story must be able to:
People need to be able to relate to your story. If they can’t see themselves in your story, it will pass them by. Before you tell your story, it is important to consider your audience. This is true for any story that you tell: would you tell your mother the same story you were told at the pub yesterday afternoon by the barman? Possibly, but possibly not. You would definitely have to weigh it up. Ask yourself who your audience is, what their struggles and aspirations are and then build your story with them in mind. Your story should be authentic, true and meaningful.
Your audience begins to trust you when your story reminds them of their own struggle, especially if it is something they are struggling with right now. Think of your favourite movies: you like them because you can relate to something or someone in the story and it reminds you of something in your own life. What is a movie but a visual story? The same goes with the story you are telling.
Your story must be compelling enough for your audience to respond by taking action. Without action, nothing is possible for them, only more of the same suffering. the best way to create a response in your audience is to follow on from your story with some immediate tips to help people improve their current situation. This is where your story starts to blend with your solution and offers your audience a way forward.
So now you’ve shared your story and your audience is starting to trust you. They are starting to relate to you, your story reminded them of their specific problem, and they have responded by wanting to take action to change their situation. Your audience is ready to go on the Wellness Journey with you. How wonderful – now you are in a position to help them, which is what you want and they need!
What story will you tell?