With some product and service categories, we automatically expect marketers to inspire us.
For example, if we are being sold a weight-loss program, we expect to hear inspirational stories about those who have come before us.
We expect to see before and after photos, and to hear about how people’s lives are improved as they shed those extra pounds.
Weight-loss and wellness coaches help us succeed by inspiring us with positive messages and stories.
It’s what we expect.
But we can also create inspirational content for slightly less obvious categories.
For example, if I am selling you on a destination for your next vacation, I should look for ways to use inspirational content.
Let’s say I’m pitching a trip to Manhattan.
I could do the usual thing, like listing the major tourist spots. I could talk about the tours, the shows on Broadway, exhibitions at the major galleries, deals on hotels, and so on.
By doing that I could get people excited, but not really inspired.
To inspire people, you need to offer them not things to see, or things to do… but experiences.
I could tell the story of a couple who came all the way to Manhattan to see a particular exhibition, only to find the gallery was closed. But as they walked away, trying to swallow their disappointment, they glanced down an alleyway and found a hole-in-the-wall gallery that was even better than the one they first planned to visit.
I’ll write about how this is typical of Manhattan. How it’s the unexpected, serendipitous discoveries you make that define your trip.
I’ll tell other stories too. If I write about a restaurant, I’m not going to write about the menu and décor, but about the conversations enjoyed, the new friends made and so on.
You can take this approach with pretty much anything.
If you’re trying to create content for a fairly mundane produce like a mountain bike seat, don’t just talk about the seat or the bike. Talk about an amazing bike ride you had with friends on a particularly challenging trail last weekend.
Discovering that hole-in-the-wall gallery, the friendly restaurant, and the challenging bike trail are all about experiences, rather than products or services.
What I’m doing here is telling stories that are designed to inspire.
And when you inspire your readers, when they feel that glow of positive energy inside, they will stay engaged with your content for longer and are then more likely to buy.
As you will have noticed by now, the gateway to inspirational content is almost always the telling of a story.
Descriptions of products and services on their own are rarely inspirational. Good stories, however, can inspire in ways that dramatically improve conversion rates.
In other words, to create inspirational content, tell great stories.
NOTE: If you want to know more about the power of telling stories, check out my course, Selling With Stories…
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