The Art of Storytelling Brings Clarity to the Mission
I have a lot of people asking me through my newsletter how I got started building Perspective-Collective and how was I able to grow an audience around it. I get the question so much that I felt a series to help walk you through setting up a foundation for your personal brand and growing an audience was necessary.
Part 1 is going to be about your story (understanding who you are).
Part 2 will be about your creative gift (finding your sweet spot).
Part 3 is about your intent (what’s your why).
The combination of these 3 is the winning formula for building a foundation for your creative path.
There are many reasons for why you would want an online audience. You realize having this tribe of loyal followers can help you:
- position yourself as a thought leader
- establish influence and authority
- boost social proof
- build community and deep relationships with like-minded creatives
- sell and launch products easier to a targeted segment
- create brand ambassadors and loyal customers
Of course, you want all of this but do you even know where to start?
I truly believe before you can build a successful platform with an engaged online audience, you must understand who you are, what your gift is and why you’re doing it.
The first step to starting is establishing your story.
Knowing Who You Are Changes What You Do
Whether you know it or not, you have an incredible story to share. Your life experiences can serve as valuable insight to people.
These experiences can range from:
- client work
- workplace roles
- how you responded to adversity
- times you’ve failed
- times you’ve succeeded
- wants, wishes or regrets
All these can be used to share an authentic, transparent side of you. This helps you establish credibility and provide something people can resonate with.
Along with time, your story is one of your most powerful and valuable asset.
When you share your story, you let others who may be in your shoes realize they are not alone with their struggles and fears.
When someone asks you to tell them a little about yourself, how often does it come off like this:
“My name is Scotty Russell and I’m from a small town in Iowa and I like to create art.”
This is far from compelling and it isn’t going to intrigue anyone to stand behind your cause.
However, when you give a background story like this:
“I almost quit on my creativity and on myself. Life has been a roller coaster for me and I used to dwell in the defeats. One day I managed to change my perspective and began believing in my abilities as an artist and as a human. I want to show you that you can create your own world instead of living in a world that’s been given to you no matter where you’re from or what you’ve been through. I’d love to share with you what I’m learning on my creative path.”
Sounds a smidge more enticing right?
It’s all about how you position yourself; if you make your story sound vague, bland and boring, that’s exactly what it’s going to come off as. If you get vulnerable, real and let people know who you are to the core, it’s more likely they will latch on to your story and see themselves in your mission.
Knowing who you are is important when you embark on building an engaged online audience.
Knowing who you are changes what you do.
Knowing Yourself Through Writing
One of the best ways I feel to reveal your story to yourself is through writing.
Starting a blog in June 2015 is easily the biggest reason I’ve gained clarity of who I am and how valuable my story is. By no means did I think I was a writer, but writing has helped me project my inner voice outward and provide clarity on my purpose in life.
Writing gave me a voice which led to public speaking. This gave me a new platform to truly share my back story which I never shared before until I wrote it word for word from the comfort of my home office.
It let me vent my frustrations, fears and struggles all on one document. It let me see the person I used to be and the person I’ve become. It made me proud to know the adversity I’ve overcome. It’s put me in a position to help others value their story.
The impact my story made when I shared it on stage at Creative South was a game changing moment for me. I was scared to death and afraid of being judged by my creative peers I looked up to. Yet after getting vulnerable and sharing my dark times, I had waves of people expressing how they could relate—they were thankful for me being real.
It’s About You but It’s Not About You
Here’s the kicker and my biggest tip in this post.
People will care about you and your story when you show you care about them. When you are able to tell a compelling story framing the delivery towards benefiting your audience, you both win.
My story shares my defeats but I like to position it around how someone like you can avoid the hardships. If I share a victory I make sure to lay out the step-by-step process so you can experience the win too.
Keep this in mind as your hash out your story as it helps people realize they aren’t alone not their creative path.
I’ve seen the power of sharing my story and I know the attraction I feel to others when they share a story I can relate to. It’s important to have clarity of who you and and where you’ve come from—it helps you decide with confidence of where you’re going.
Next week I’m going continue into Part two of the series which will go into depth about your gift and finding your sweet spot. I hope you’re ready!
- Building a successful platform with an audience starts with knowing who you are, what your gift is and why you’re doing it.
- Along with time, your story is one of your most powerful and valuable assets.
- When you share your story, you let others who may be in your shoes realize they are not alone with their struggles and fears.
- Knowing who you are changes what you do.
- One of the best ways I feel to reveal your story to yourself is through writing.
- People will care if you tell a compelling story that frames the delivery towards benefiting them.
Do You Have a Question That Would Make Helpful Content?
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