Hi there, I’m Samara, one of the writers here at Results and Co. I just had to write this article to tell you the impact Donald Miller and StoryBrand have had on the team, our clients and myself personally.
Ever since school, I’ve loved to write poetry, speeches, and stories, but always struggled with capturing my audience’s attention. I used flowery and complicated language, making my audience decipher my words as I went – and quickly losing their attention. By 8th grade I was slowly losing my top spot in English and went on to flunk the English portion of my HSC.
6 years on, I joined my dad – James Hannan the CEO of Results and Co –as a writer of social media, websites, and emails and discovered Donald Miller’s 7-part StoryBrand Framework.
Who Is Donald Miller?
Donald Miller is the founder and CEO of Business Made Simple, and author of the best marketing tool you could buy, the book ‘Building a StoryBrand.’Teaching marketers and business owners how to use the seven elements of story-making to dramatically improve how to connect with customers and grow business.
With his wife, Elizabeth, and daughter, Emmeline, Donald Miller has made a home and workspace in Nashville Tennessee. This is where he completed his latest book “Hero on a Mission” and continues to inspire and motivate businesspeople all over the world.
One phrase he states which has helped me understand that capturing your audience is all about simple and straightforward language is,“When you confuse, you lose.”– and in the marketing world, simplicity and connecting with your audience is key.
The biggest part of Donald Miller’s Framework is to become the guide in the story rather than the hero – this was my biggest hurdle, especially in school, and this habit dies hard – while the hero in the story you are telling is always your customer.
In its simplest form the 7-part framework is:
- A character
- Has a problem
- And meets a guide
- Who gives them a plan
- And calls them to action
- That helps them to avoid failure
- An ends in success
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This is your customer who wants something, in your case a solution to their problem. In the movies the hero is identified at the beginning, and within minutes the audience knows what they want. Your audience should know what they want from you on the first page of your website
Ask yourself, what do my customers want, and what is the one thing my brand is known to offer? Summarise this in one short sentence, or better yet a few words. Something simple that can be memorised and repeated with ease.
Has a problem:
What is your customers problem that needs solving? Have you clearly defined the problem you solve?
If you do not clearly define your customers problem, they will click away without a second thought. When you define that problem and offer a resolution, you capture your audience’s attention.
And meets a guide:
As stated earlier, your customers are looking for a guide – not another hero. You are Yoda, not Skywalker; Haymitch, not Katniss; Q, not James Bond.
Your customers don’t want to talk about what YOU are trying to do. They want to know what weapons you can give them to save the world, get the girl, and win the day – how your product will solve their problem.
Are you positioning yourself as your guide?
Who gives them plan:
Your customers won’tbuy from you straight away. All they see is a gaping chasm between where they are and what they can become. Opening their wallet on a whim is scary. They may lose money or be embarrassed if their problem doesn’t get solved.
All they need is a simple 3 or 4 step plan that makes it easy for them to agree to do business with you and overcome their problems.
And calls them to action:
Now is the time to ask for a sale but remember: customers don’t act unless they are challenged to act. As the guide, you must challenge them to buy something from you.
For example: If Katniss doesn’t defy the Capital, countless children will be slaughtered for fun. She canact or bow.
At the top right-hand corner of your website, you must have a ‘Buy now’ button that is not crowded by about, contact, and FAQ buttons. Make it a different font, colour and obvious.
That helps them avoid failure:
The only reason that heroes (or heroines) are compelled to act, is because something is at stake – the world, their loved ones, their reputation – to avoid a tragic ending (failure).
Everyone wants to avoid a tragic ending. You must clearly communicate the negative consequences of not doing business with you.
Have you communicated the stakes clearly? What are the negatives of not doing business with you?
And ends in success:
Lastly, is probably how will buying your product or service benefit their lives? What will they become after doing business with you?
If you’re not telling people what their life will look like when they do business with you, they won’t do business with you. It may seem obvious, but it is important to show their success in a way that will make your customer feel it was their choice alone that got them their transformation – not you.
In conclusion, Donald Miller’s framework has given me a step-by-step guide to capture my readers attention. It has helped me write with clarity, understanding and in a way that captures my audience’s attention.
It has helped me to understand the key to capturing your audience is all about simple and straightforward language. To take that step back and become the guide. To build a strong foundation before painting the walls.
I hope my sharing has brought some insight and understanding into the world of marketing and business, May you reach your business goals.