Three Card Monte (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
An article in the New York Times talks about a lady hoodwinked by a three-card Monte operator. The lady was intelligent and frugal. But “Monte operators…are exceptional creators of drama, of the sort of narrative sweep that makes everything seem legitimate, even inevitable.”
Since I tend to see things through the prism of marketing, ideas and creativity, I tied this into what I consider an important element of any good communication: telling a story in your copy, rather than simply reciting facts.
As the article further points out, in a decidedly different context, “Stories are one of the most powerful forces of persuasion available to us…facts can be contested. I can dismiss someone’s logic, but dismissing how I feel is harder.”
That last sentence sums up the value of a telling a story for me. It is similar to the power of pointing out your product’s differences, rather than stating why your product is better. “Better” is a challenge, a potential argument, simply subjective. “Different” is a discussion, and even if factual can lead to a compelling story.
There is much more to the Times story than the few statements that I quoted. Well worth reading all of it. And next time your child asks you to recite a list of facts rather than to tell them a story, show them the article.
Got the idea?