I'm still waiting for the company who will crack the code of storytelling — just like Vladimir Propp did for fairy tales — and get it right every time, with every product launch. (Image credits: Mario Lapid, Wikimedia Commons) ...
LOL -- this article heated up the Twittersphere last night, and with good cause. It's message is simple and clear: if you want lots of sales when you introduce a new product or service, you must tell a story!
For most of us, we've already figured that out. What I like about this article is that the author, Romain Dillet shares his experiences of new technology product launches from Apple, Samsung & Microsoft at recent conferences.
His conclusion? Apple definitely fell of the wagon and did not proivde a story. Microsoft definitely did not tell a story -- both of these companies defaulted to promoting product features. Boring -- as the author says!! He points out that being able to hold the new iPad in one hand is a 'use case' (how someone would use the product) and not a story.
Samsung got closer. The author included a link to a Samsung commercial that was a story -- about the phones features, LOL -- I watched it and it sounds like an interesting 'use case' to me! The Samsung commercial is a fun poke at Apple, but the story line is all about the bigger screen and weight. That .is OK but it doesn't get the story job done.
OK -- so where does that leave us?
To avoid defaulting to product features or use cases, for starters make sure your story has a problem and resolution. A challenge to overcome. Something meaningful to happen.
Check out another article I curated with a great example so you can see exactly what I mean: http://www.scoop.it/t/just-story-it?q=how+to+weave+a+story
So who does tell great product stories? Nike and Lego come to mind. If I had more coffee this morning I'm sure I'd think of others.
In addition, the author cites someone near and dear to my heart -- Vladimir Propp from the Russian School of Folklore who published The Morphology of the Folktale in the 1920s. Propp was the first to diagram the common structure of fairy tales which Joseph Campbell, Chris Vogler and others have used ever since. Anyone who cites Propp in an article gets a gold star from me!
Overall, even though the examples Dillet gives don't quite hold up 100%, there are still lots of good insights here that make this worth reading.
And yes, every successful product lauch does need a good story!
Do you have a good example to product launch + story to share?
This review was written by Karen Dietz for her curated content on business storytelling at www.scoop.it/t/just-story-it