My career as a Business Consultant started in the backroom of my first retail location called Skip To My Room, a children’s fine furniture and accessory store. With scissors, glue, and a type writer I redesigned a major furniture manufacturers catalogs. The company provided lovely pictures, item numbers, and pricing but guess what….in my inexperience and humble opinion they did not tell their story well. I had to take six of their catalogs and cut them to pieces. In my tiny little retail shop I was producing sales for this company that had them sending their national sales rep to see what I was up to. Let’s just says my sales were over the top. Along with merchandising, I made their biggest investment of training stores all over the US my craft table of fun. The rep was was miffed when he saw the “new and improved catalog.” What did I do? I told a story. I took what parents experience everyday when trying to design and choose collections and helped them write their story. ( This little craft projected launched my career in consulting as this company hired me to design their catalogs.)
It’s easy when you have a creative and designer brain to make “it” work. Imagine if you did not have that kind of creative thought. Many people do not. What comes natural and easy for a creative person does not come easy for someone who is not wired like that. I imagine the person who put those catalogs together was thinking of numbers, product codes and then dropped in some images. Now how is a parent going to decide and choose designs that best fit their kids room needs?
I was zoning out on Instagram ( @elizonthego find me ) the other day and came across this picture.
I took a screen shot and thought, “this person get’s it.” What is so special about a picture full of pillows? The designer, Karen Larkin of elmenOPillows is helping write and tell a story with her pictures. She has done the designing for the not so creatives to give them ideas on how to use color, prints, and texture. If she had one single pillow, it would look pretty and a creative person can think of five other colors or prints to go with it. You can also take one single pillow and add in elements of design to show how to use that one single pillow. However a non creative thinker may like that one single pillow, buy it, get it home and then not know how to mix or match anything else to go with it. I met this designer over 20 years ago as we were young moms raising our children in our cul-de-sac. She moved within a year and through Social Media platforms we have kept in touch. I have a confession. As I was looking at these pillows, took the screen shot and was inspired to write I had NO IDEA in that moment it my friend.
How are you telling the story of your business or brand? Do not assume that the consumer will know how to pull in all the pieces to begin to write their own story with YOUR products. We are the experts in our industries. We are more connected than ever and there are many ways to tell your story and give your viewer options and ideas on buying your story. You don’t have to be a published or a famous author to write, take pictures, and share a story to sell your brand. Perhaps more of the consultant, than kids room designer is coming out as I write. I have worked with many companies who have not grasped the importance of telling their story. Telling a story did not just start with the onset of Social Media. If you are telling a good story, guess what? You will sell your ideas, your product and the end consumer gets excited because you have added great value to their shopping experience. Look closely at the picture below. The story of how to use this piece of furniture. Mixing and matching all kinds of kids room design accents in a color theme. Helping my customer’s make decisions on decorating and just how much stuff this piece can hold. How are you telling the story of your business or brand?