In 1991, when Prodigy was the big internet trend some years before AOL and ‘you’ve got mail’ came along, I took an interest in creative writing, and wrote about television shows, movies, and engaged in written debates.
Every Wednesday night after the latest episode of Beverly Hills 90201, I took to Prodigy to write 90210: The Real Fans, a weekly recap of the latest 90210 episode, and what I called at the time, six pages of mindless drivel.
One day, Steve Wasserman, Executive Producer of the TV show ‘Beverly Hills 90201’ e-mailed me after taking an interest in my 90210 Prodigy column. Gushing about my writing, Wasserman said I understood the magic of serial television, and encouraged me to take my writing to Hollywood. Then he sent me several TV scripts (90210, Cheers, and Northern Exposure), and my soon to be exciting career in TV script writing went nowhere fast, as life took me in a different direction.
Thirty years of creative writing experience, plus the lasting memory of getting high praise from a Hollywood producer who wrote Beverly Hills 90210 episodes for a living has enabled a life of prolific creative writing adventures, which has been both a blessing and curse.
To make $$$ on creative writing you really need to be an established screenwriter, playwriter, or have the discipline of bestselling novelists James Patterson, or David Balducci; and I know this because I learned a great deal from both by taking their MasterClass course.
But anyway, we’re not writing 500 page novels in this business model.
Content creation in my line of business is less glamorous than television or novel writing, but can still be profitable with good Business Storytelling.
So wait. What is Business Storytelling?
Everyone is super busy, often multitasking, and we live in a world with stretched out attention spans, where people are reading less and less, watching more and more video, and will opt out when they can for some entertainment and escape. (Notice I reference entertainment)
With Business Storytelling, there is intentional, well thought out marketing at play here. Advertisers strategically do this all the time when crafting an idea or jingle to intentionally get stuck in the minds of mass consumers.
Business Storytelling isn’t complicated, and this isn’t Shakespeare,
At the most basic level, Business Storytelling is like doing prep for a presentation, and delivering the well thought out presentation with the the intent to win the business, except here, Madison Avenue advertising meets Broadway playwriting, with a subtle twist.
Business Storytelling requires intelligent research, and good thinking to put together an interesting, and entertaining story that will (if done right) help strengthen the business relationship, establish trust, alignment, and if really good, your audience begins to see themselves as part of the story, and identifies with actionable next steps. So this can be powerful stuff.
So how do you tell a great story without spending top $$$ on Madison Avenue advertising brainpower? This is where mechanics of playwriting, entertainment, and authenticity come in.
How do you measure ROI on Business Storytelling?
You win the business.