Your Destination is a Story

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    People tell stories; great stories become myths because they allow audiences to aspire to a basic value.
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    We moved from an oral tradition of storytelling to a broadcast era where ideas spread in one direction.
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    We’re now in a digital era where everyone spreads ideas and tells stories; the best survive over time.
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    Great marketing stories don’t sell products. Marlboro ads didn’t sell cigarettes; they sold manliness at a time when filtered cigarettes were for women.
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    In the best stories, the hero goes on a journey, meets a mentor who gives him a talisman and sends him off on an adventure to seek a truth.
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    In successful marketing, stories empower their audiences.
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    In traditional broadcast marketing, the focus is on the brand—its accomplishments.
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    But engaging stories make the audience the hero by giving them something to aspire to.
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    You can share all the great sustainability stuff that you’re doing. But that’s not a story that’s going to stick with your audience.
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    A very successful Dove soap campaign didn’t focus on the product’s cleaning power; it engaged women around their feelings about self-image and self-worth.
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    Values are the essence of what your brand stands for.
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    The nonprofit Charity Water stands for water as the basis of life.
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    This Nike campaign was not about running shoes but inner strength.
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    Patagonia takes the audience on the sustainability journey; they don’t claim that they’re doing everything perfectly. Sustainability is a journey.
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    Airbnb’s campaign is about the essential goodness of people.
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    What is a value that you can share about your brand?
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