Sales Storytelling with Tom Jackobs

Sales Storytelling with Tom Jackobs

The Chris Hood Digital Show - Episode 21 with Tom Jackobs
The Chris Hood Digital Show
Sales Storytelling with Tom Jackobs

In an era defined by data, analytics, and ROI metrics, it’s easy to overlook the timeless power of a good story. We often associate storytelling with campfires and bedtime routines rather than conference rooms and quarterly earnings reports. However, the art of storytelling is not just for novelists and filmmakers; it is an invaluable tool in the world of sales and business.

One of the most cited statistics supporting this idea is from psychologist Jerome Bruner, who found that facts are 20 times more likely to be remembered if they’re part of a story. This statistic not only underscores the incredible retention power of stories but also demonstrates their capacity to influence and persuade — two critical elements in sales.

On this week’s episode, we are joined by Tom Jackobs, Entrepreneur and Coach, to discuss why storytelling works and how to harness its power to drive sales.

The Science Behind Storytelling

When you share facts or statistics, you engage the language-processing parts of the brain. But storytelling activates parts of the brain associated with experience and emotion, transforming your audience from passive recipients to active participants.

Stories trigger the release of neurochemicals like dopamine, which enhances focus, and oxytocin, which promotes empathy and connection. Storytelling is an age-old hack to human cognition.

“There was a study done at Princeton University where they took a storyteller and put them in a functional MRI machine, so measuring brainwaves and what areas of the brain is lightening up, and then they had a two receivers of the story again in another functional MRI machine, and what they found is when the story was being told, the same areas of the brain were lighting up in the storyteller as with the receivers of the story itself.” – Tom Jackobs

The Basic Elements of a Good Story

Before you can tell a compelling story, it’s crucial to understand its essential elements:

  • Characters: The audience must relate to the characters in your story, whether it’s a dissatisfied customer, a dedicated employee, or even your product.
  • Conflict: The challenge or problem that needs solving makes your story engaging.
  • Narrative Arc: This includes the exposition, rising action, climax, and resolution, culminating in a satisfying conclusion.
  • Theme or Moral: What’s the takeaway? A good story in a business context should leave your audience with a lesson or a call to action.

Sales Storytelling: The Process

Stage 1: Understanding Your Audience

You wouldn’t tell a romance story to an audience looking for a thriller. Similarly, understanding your audience’s needs, wants, and pain points is the first step in crafting a compelling sales story.

Stage 2 (Option 1): Crafting a Product Story

  1. Problem Identification: Begin by stating the problem your product or service solves.
  2. Introduce the Hero: This could be your product, or better yet, a satisfied customer who has used your product to solve their problem.
  3. The Journey: Take your audience through the ups and downs of solving the problem, ideally using real-life examples or case studies.
  4. Climax: Show how your product or service provided the ultimate solution.
  5. Resolution and Call to Action: End by summarizing how the solution improved the hero’s life and invite your audience to experience the exact resolution by taking action.

Stage 2 (Option 2): Crafting a Brand Story

  1. Identify Core Values: List your top 3-5 personal and professional values you want your brand to represent.
  2. Define Target Audience: Know who you want to reach. Tailor your story elements to appeal to this group’s needs and aspirations.
  3. Craft the Narrative: Combine your values and audience insights to develop a compelling story arc. Highlight the challenges you’ve overcome and how they shaped you.
  4. Incorporate Evidence: Validate your story with testimonials, achievements, or case studies. Show how your journey has led to tangible results or learnings.
  5. Iterate and Refine: Test your brand story across different platforms and gather feedback. Make necessary refinements to ensure clarity, impact, and authenticity.

Stage 2 (Option 3): Crafting a Personal Story

  1. Find Your “Why”: Think of a life event or experience that profoundly impacted you and aligned with your talk’s theme.
  2. Sketch Characters: You’re the main character, but who played supporting roles? Briefly describe these individuals and their significance.
  3. Identify Conflict: What obstacle did you face? How did it challenge your beliefs or change your course?
  4. Plot Milestones: Condense your experience into key moments—initial challenge, climax, and resolution—to guide your storytelling.
  5. Narrate & Revise: Write or speak your story, focusing on emotional resonance and relatability. Revisit and refine to ensure clarity and impact.

Stage 3: Delivery

This is where the “art” in the art of storytelling comes into play. Use vivid language, maintain eye contact, and modulate your voice to engage your audience. If possible, use visual aids like slides or props to enhance the narrative.

Stage 4: Feedback Loop

The story is still ongoing when you finish telling it. Gather feedback, look for cues of engagement or disinterest, and adjust your future storytelling efforts accordingly.

Storytelling in Business Beyond Sales

The power of storytelling isn’t limited to just sales pitches or marketing campaigns. It can be used in internal communications to build culture, in presentations to stakeholders to secure investment, and in customer service to turn an unhappy customer into a brand evangelist.

The art and process of storytelling are not esoteric concepts reserved for the creative industry. They are pragmatic tools that can make you more persuasive, help you connect with your audience, and ultimately drive business goals. By taking the time to master storytelling, you elevate not just your product but the very experience of doing business with you.

Chris Hood (00:00):
Hey everyone. Thanks for listening. In an error defined by data analytics and R O I metrics, it’s easy to overlook the timeless power of a good story. We often associate storytelling with campfires and bedtime routines rather than conference rooms in quarterly earnings reports. However, the art of storytelling is not just for novelists and filmmakers. It’s an invaluable tool in the world of sales and business. One of the most cited statistics supporting this idea is from psychologist Jerome Bruner, who found that facts are 20 times more likely to be remembered if they’re a part of a story. This statistic not only underscores the incredible retention power of stories, but it also demonstrates their capacity to influence and persuade. On this episode, we are joined by Tom Jacobs, entrepreneur and coach to discuss why storytelling works and how to harness its power to drive sales. Grab a copy of my new book, customer Transformation, A seven Stage Strategy for Customer Alignment and Business Value. This is your essential guide for customer success in the digital age. Learn how to adapt to your customer’s ever-evolving needs and revolutionize your business strategy to achieve sustainable growth. Available now on Amazon, Barnes and Noble or my website, and to support the show, visit chris Subscribe to the show on your favorite podcast platform. Follow us on social media or you can email me directly [email protected]. I’m Chris Hood and let’s get connected.

Voice Over (01:45):
Connecting access. It’s the Chris Hood digital show where global business and technology leaders meet to discuss strategy, innovation, and digital acceleration. 5, 4, 3, 2, 1. Your digital evolution starts. Here’s your host, Chris Hood.

Chris Hood (02:17):
Welcome to the show. Tom, would you mind introducing yourself?

Tom Jackobs (02:22):
Absolutely. My name is Tom Jacobs and I am an entrepreneur for the last 30 years, which really means that I’m allergic to working for other people. Over that time. I’ve had several businesses, lots of failures, but I wouldn’t have it any other way because those failures have always taught me something, and over that course of time, I’ve been able to develop a skillset that includes storytelling with sales, and that’s what I guess we’re going to be talking about today.

Chris Hood (02:52):
Yes, I love a good story. I’m sure you have a hundred of them to share with us today. Most often the sales teams just want to go and talk about product features and just jam it down somebody’s throat, but storytelling as part of sales can be very powerful.

Tom Jackobs (03:10):
Well, it’s really interesting the science behind storytelling. There was a study done at Princeton University where they took a storyteller and put them in a functional M R I machine, so measuring brainwaves and what areas of the brain is lightening up, and then they had two receivers of the story again in another functional M R I machine, and what they found is when the story was being told, the same areas of the brain were lighting up in the storyteller as with the receivers of the story itself. So when you think about that, you have a neurological connection with your audience and I don’t know if you’ve probably been on these sales calls before where somebody’s just rattling off figures and stats and features and all this stuff, and it just goes in one ear and out the other, and then you don’t really retain it.
But the moment somebody starts to tell a story like, oh, I got this. Let me tell you about this one time, and grandpa would start with, and all of a sudden everybody perks up. They’re like, oh, it’s story time because everybody loves a good story. That’s why the entertainment industry is what it is, making billions of dollars on movies. So if we incorporate that into our sales presentation very strategically, we can keep that either one prospect or if you’re selling to a group of people, we can keep them engaged in the conversation and further move that sale down the road to where you want it to be.

Chris Hood (04:46):
It’s not just about the once upon a time with grandpa story. Like you said, I’ve spent hundreds of hours in sales meetings and I’ve watched the sales team just as we’ve talked about jamming the stuff down people’s throats and everyone in the room is tuning out and yet I can simply share a use case or imagine if you took this product and you put it into this scenario, it doesn’t even have to be an actual story. Just sharing conceptually ideas and taking them on that journey I think is just as critical.

Tom Jackobs (05:25):
Absolutely. It gets people to use their imagination where instead of being talked to, they’re being talked with, so it becomes more of a interactive conversation rather than just that salesperson trying to shove something down their throat.

Chris Hood (05:41):
Now, how do you strike a balance? Obviously we’re in sales to close the deal. Now in my case, I was the storyteller and all I did was come in, tell all the pretty stories and then hand it off to sales and let them close the deal, so I was disconnected from the process. But there is some level of balance between that emotional connection you’re talking about and then actually closing the deal.

Tom Jackobs (06:07):
Yeah, absolutely. I don’t think there’s any hard and fast rule. I certainly don’t follow a hard and feather it’s 20 minutes of story time and 10 minutes of selling. It’s really a feel for what the conversation is that you want to happen. As a salesperson, I always like to start off with a personal story with a new prospect, somebody that doesn’t really know me yet, because now if I introduce a personal story and maybe the story of why I do what I do, which is really important to share with a prospect because now they know why you’re passionate about what you’re selling, and then you can go into more about the product and the features and the benefits and how it’s going to help them, and then bring that right back into a case study of a happy customer that is just like the one that’s sitting in front of you and you tell a story about what their struggle was before meeting you, what the product did for them, how they implemented it and how it served them, and then what life is like now after they’ve implemented it. That’s a very simple three-step story process, and you can weave those in and out of the sales presentation very elegantly, but unless you plan it out, it’s going to be like grandpa telling a tale for hours and not going anywhere. So there’s a planning process that needs to happen prior to going into that sales presentation to make sure that the stories are appropriate in that conversation.

Chris Hood (07:47):
I want to come back to that planning process, but you also touched on something that I want to ask you. We start off the conversation with a story, however, I also find that that storytelling can happen before the meeting even begins as you’re gathering with the people in the room. I will often start off with something I read in the news for the day, just bringing some of that connection with relevant current events can also build the relationship that ultimately we’re trying to accomplish with the storytelling.

Tom Jackobs (08:23):
Yeah, absolutely, and I consider that more rapport building, and that’s kind of that small talk that happens before you get into the actual sales presentation where people get to know and trust you, and then you can go into the more formal presentation of your personal story when the meeting actually starts.

Chris Hood (08:41):
Now that trust though, we see different levels of trust having an impact on the believability of your stories.

Tom Jackobs (08:49):
Even with that, stories can’t be refuted. You think that somebody’s lying about a story, I’m sure, but when you’re telling a story, especially from the heart, it’s really hard to stand up and tell somebody you’re lying about, I don’t believe you. I don’t believe went through that, versus if somebody is saying, well, 25% of the people using our product, they’re like 25% really? Is that true? And they’re going to want to fact check that versus your story. It’s your story. So it’s really hard for somebody to actually say, nah, you’re lying. I don’t believe your story. So I think the trust factor is easier with the story, so that’s why I always like to lead with that before going into the product features and benefits,

Chris Hood (09:37):
Which takes us back to the planning. I also often find is a crutch for a lot of people. You can plan an entire meeting, you can specify, okay, I’m going to open with this story, I’m going to use this use case. I’ve got these stats, and yet it’s also important to read the room and if the story you’re sharing is not really resonating, I know a lot of people who say, Hey, I’m a great storyteller. They’ve got three stories in their head. They go in and tell the exact same three stories, and it could have nothing to do with what the meeting is about.

Tom Jackobs (10:10):
Absolutely, and that’s why you always do research before going into a sales presentation anyway, to learn about the prospect and what their needs are, and then based on that, the personal story I think is pretty solid. You don’t really have to change that much based on the prospect versus a case study story. You could really screw that up by, I was in fitness for a long time at a fitness center and when I would be selling fitness to people, if I had a 45 year old woman that had three kids and wanted to lose 20 pounds, I wouldn’t show her the testimonial of the bodybuilder that I helped get down to 2% body fat. The disconnect there is just she’d be like, I don’t want that. Oh, gross. But if I show her another 45 year old that has two kids was 40 pounds overweight, lost the weight, she’d be like, wow, she did that. I can do that too. And that’s where the reading of the room and understanding who your prospect is, especially when you’re telling those case study stories, becomes really, really important.

Chris Hood (11:18):
So how hard is it?

Tom Jackobs (11:20):
Maybe I’m biased because I’ve been doing it for so long and I have a theater degree, so it’s maybe in my training, but I think the fear that a lot of people have is one, my story’s not good enough. I think I hear that all the time, or, well, I don’t have a tragedy story that I can share, and I don’t have a near life experience. I’m not rags to riches. It’s like you don’t need tragedy. The tragic stories are actually easier to get to, but the comedies are just as good as the tragedies, so why not have those really joyous events to share as a personal story in terms of telling why you do what you do. But if you follow a very simple process, and that’s what I do with my clients, I just go through a process of laying out using the standard storytelling technique of the hero’s journey, and we go to the impact moment or the inciting moment, the do or die situation, and then we just focus on that at first and then fill in the rest to bring the audience on an up and down little roller coaster ride.
As you tell that story, once you have the prompts and the structure, then it just becomes a matter of just writing in and filling in the blanks.

Chris Hood (12:45):
I look at storytelling and I have a process, a philosophy of my own beginner, intermediate, advanced as a beginner. Just being able to come up with a couple of stories, memorize those stories and be able to recite those stories at a moment’s notice. That’s fairly beginner basic level. Would you agree?

Tom Jackobs (13:07):
Yeah, absolutely.

Chris Hood (13:08):
Now, when we get to more intermediate, it’s about having multiple stories and being able to, we’ll say, tweak those stories just a little bit based on your audience. One of the best storytellers, now this is fiction, but one of the best storytellers that I always appreciate is if you’ve ever watched the show Blacklist with James Spader, he plays a character called Raymond Reddington, and Raymond Reddington is a fugitive on the most wanted list, and he works with the F B I to solve big cases. Now, what the character does, obviously this is all scripted, but what the character does is he’s able to tell a story at any given moment about any relevant thing that is happening in that moment. So you could be talking about bread and he says, once I was in France and I was at a bakery and there was this bread, and he comes off with this incredibly elaborate story, which is absolutely fabulous. Maybe that’s not advanced level, maybe that’s expert level, but I think the key here is that you begin to have a set of stories in your head with keywords that are associated to those stories. So let’s just say you have 10 stories, they’re all memorized, they’re all in your head, and I’m going to come back to that memorization piece and you hear a keyword like bread, and you quickly recall that story and you come out with that story in real time. Do you follow me so far?

Tom Jackobs (14:40):
Oh, absolutely. Yeah, and that’s one of my favorite shows too, by the way. And you’re right, he would weave in those stories just so elegantly as well, where you don’t even feel like that you’re being told a story,

Chris Hood (14:56):
And it also distracts people from what’s actually going on in that moment. It’s like, oh, wait, I’m mad at you. I met, oh, story. Interesting. What’s going on? I think that takes us back to the research you were talking about at the beginning. I say memorizing stories, but the reality is I think we all have stories, we have grown up and our entire life is a story, and it doesn’t have to be the tragic one that you’ve talked about. It doesn’t have to be some specific story about an event that is relevant. Just tell a story, tell your grandpa’s story, because it doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s relevant, but it’s bringing people into the conversation. If you can make it relevant because somebody just said, oh, I don’t know how grandpas are going to use this banking app. You can say, well, when I was talking with my grandpa, and you go into that story that I think doesn’t require as much practice or memorization as you think it does. It’s just being able to open up and reveal those stories when the time is appropriate.

Tom Jackobs (16:05):
Yes, 100%. And like you said, it’s not memorizing the words of the story, but rather memorizing the structure of storytelling so that the story is compelling. Because the worst thing that you could do is just tell a chronological story from start to finish, and that’s super boring and doesn’t necessarily fit that hero’s journey. It is just like exercising. If you go to the gym one time, you’re not going to lose weight, but if you keep working that muscle, you’re going to build that muscle. You can get stronger and stronger and stronger. And it’s the same with storytelling. The more you practice, the better you’re going to get and the more on the fly that you can start to now hear those keywords and go, oh yeah, this would be a perfect case study to share with this prospect, or this would be a great story to interject. At this point,
Chris Hood (17:03):
I’m often asked when I appear on other podcasts as a guest, why are you doing this? And I have two responses. One is, well, advertising ss e o marketing, all the traditional things that you would think. The other thing is it’s practice. It is pure practice to be able to go on share stories, engage with audiences, ask questions on the fly. It even helps me with interviews like this. All of our questions right now are spontaneous. I’m engaging with you in a conversation that is the practice you’re talking about. I think everyone has to continue to hone that skill to improve really in anything, not just storytelling, but heck, even in the sales process alone, you should be practicing

Tom Jackobs (17:50):
The practice. The reps that you put in is directly correlated to the effort and the result that you get. So the more practice that you do, the better you’re going to get. And I think a lot of people also worry about being perfect and having every word just absolutely scripted, and that’s we’re never going to be perfect. That’s fine. If you screw up your story, nobody’s going to know it’s your story. So take it as an exercise in being able to engage with people rather than an exercise in trying to be perfect in this one situation. It’s never going to play out that way. Anyway,

Chris Hood (18:33):
That goes back to your planning because I’ve sat in meetings on both sides of the table where somebody’s just reading a script, they’ve got the slides up on the screen, they’re reading the slides. You know what that does? It loses all credibility that you know what you’re talking about. So the planning has to come in, the practice has to come in because it’s going to enable you to become the expert in the room

Tom Jackobs (19:03):
And not sound scripted. I think that’s really the key is how you come across as you’re telling a story. And there’s a couple instances that I remember this one boss that I had, one of those awful bosses, and we were at a trade show and he had a speaking spot and he starts to tell his story and he’s told it a thousand times, and when he was telling it this time, you could hear that he told it a thousand times and he was just bored. It seemed like he was just bored with his story and it was about surviving cancer. I’m like, dude, how do you just go, yeah, it’s stage four cancer and this happened, this happened, and then life is good. I could just feel the audience going, is this a true story? It doesn’t feel like there’s any emotion behind it either. And so that’s a trap that if you get into telling the same story over and over again and is too rehearsed, then you can get into that apathy phase of just telling the words and not the emotion behind the words, which is what really matters more.

Chris Hood (20:17):
Didn’t even really think about asking you or talking about the emotional side of storytelling, but you’re so right. I think about some of the stories that I tell repeatedly, and I’m mostly, well, I’m an excited person, so I usually maintain that level of interest in it. However, you’re absolutely right. There are so many times where I’ve listened to people’s stories and it’s just like, do they even know what they’re talking about? Do they even believe it? Now, that adds another element of fear potentially for people. It’s one thing to say you can tell a story. It’s another thing to say, you need to act this out in some way. You need to show excitement and bring out the emotional, if it’s a mystery, it’s a dark corner. We don’t have to get into that level of acting here, but there is an emotional component to this,

Tom Jackobs (21:08):
And one technique that I teach, I call it the three P process that I go through. It’s work on the presentation first, then we go into the performance, and then we work on the profits, which is the sales aspect of it. But in that performance phase, it’s really putting yourself back into that situation, and that’s the little acting trick that actors do all the time. They aren’t pulling it from their own personal experience acting in a movie, but they’re bringing something from their own life to that character so that they can emotionally be in the same space. And I have a story that I tell a lot of times for the fitness work that I do, and every time I get the little lump in my throat, my breathing, and I get emotional every time I tell that story. And the reason being is because I put myself back into the story.
And that can be scary for a lot of people too in terms of if they get emotional during because during their talk and they don’t want to get ugly cry face. And so I always teach people emotions are like a wave in the ocean, so just be a surfer, ride the wave, it’ll dissipate and you’ll just move on. If you try to fight the wave, you’re going to get ugly cry face, so allow the emotion to come up because that also is a really great connection with your audience. You can feel them behind you and just cheering you on when you bring out some of that emotion, whether it’s a sad emotion or happy or angry or whatever the emotion is. Bringing that out is important.

Chris Hood (22:56):
Well, moving from something that is filled with emotion to something we typically don’t see a lot of emotion in is digital and online connections. We’re seeing more storytelling materialize in the marketing strategies of our online interfaces, and yet there’s also a disconnect. We’re removing that personal element. We’re removing the human connection between two people. How do you see storytelling evolve online?

Tom Jackobs (23:31):
Well, that’s a really good question. I’ve put a lot of thought into it, but just off the top of my head, we have the platforms, Instagram, Facebook, social media, LinkedIn, and what’s clever about really good creators on that platform is that they follow a structure of storytelling that is generally hook, intro, content, and then close. And it’s that that’s a good story structure where you hook them in and you string them along, which is part of the hero’s journey as well, until you get to the moment where the hero realizes what they need to do and then resolves the issue. So I see that we’re probably in the age of people becoming more of storytellers and practicing it more just on social media, and I think that’s great because it creates more of a connection. It creates more watch time for people as well.

Chris Hood (24:38):
Yeah. If we look at the content that has changed from going to the movies and sitting down or radio to now YouTube and the ability to engage with a multitude of content, obviously our attention span is getting smaller. We are wanting ten second stories as opposed to 10 minute stories, but ultimately, I think you’re right, the basic premise of what you’re doing, you’re hooking them, you’re entertaining them, you’re getting them to react in some way to that content. All of that has shifted. The other area that we’re seeing now is obviously artificial intelligence and trying to build storytelling into ai, I think is still a little challenging.

Tom Jackobs (25:27):
Why’s that?

Chris Hood (25:28):
I think AI can clearly tell a story, type into chatGPT and say, tell me a short story, and it’s going to create something. It’s going to pull from references of basic premise of storytelling. It knows the hero’s journey is going to be able to tell that. However, what we’re seeing from a business perspective is chatbots, which are programmed to answer specific questions like, how much does this cost? Is it in my size? What is the weight? What are the dimensions? Any of those product types of things, and all it’s doing is answering that. We don’t see a chatbot saying, well, hello, good day to you. The other day I was talking to another customer and they had something funny to say, I just wanted to share that with you Now. What can I help you with? We don’t see our chatbots engaging with us in a storytelling mechanism to get us more engaged with that ai. It sounds fascinating, but I don’t think we’re quite there yet.

Tom Jackobs (26:23):
Yeah, yet. And I think it is coming because, and what I use AI quite a bit for content creation to create the ideas. I think it’s really good to come up with ideas and then add your own spin to it. And I, that’s where the human AI connection really will elevate marketers and storytellers to a whole nother level for a couple of reasons. One, the AI is a computer, it will fill in the blanks and will do exactly as told. And then you have the creative element of the human to bring the emotion into it and bring another element of just surprise or intrigue to the story itself.

Chris Hood (27:14):
Yeah. One of the areas I’ve been toying with from a marketing perspective is how do we create a choose your own adventure style marketing campaign where you could have the AI come up with the next step of that adventure personalized to a consumer. So consumer goes to a website, some type of personalized messaging comes up, consumer enters the response. It then evolves what you see on the screen further personalizing it, but in a storytelling kind of choose your own adventure style. I think ai, to your point, can help with a lot of those types of really interactive, engaging, conceptual pieces, but you still need that human piece to come back in and just have touchpoint of emotional connection so that they know that you still care.

Tom Jackobs (28:11):
Yep. Yeah, absolutely. And I think AI is getting much smarter as well, and bringing some of that emotion into it as well, and giving some interesting advice. I love playing around, and I have it do limericks and haiku poems, and it’ll come up with really, really good haikus, which is the shorter the poem or the shorter the story, it’s more difficult to actually get a really good story in a very short period of time. And that’s where the AI can help in terms of story structure, so that you take your long story, put that in and say, okay, make this more concise at a two minute or a hundred words or something like that, and it’ll spit out something and you’re like, oh, this is great. Let me rearrange a few things. And now I have my one minute elevator pitch of a story that I would’ve taken 10 minutes to talk about.

Chris Hood (29:08):
Yeah. I was working with a company just a couple of weeks ago. They needed some help with their business plan, and they shared with me their pitch. They called it an elevator pitch, but their elevator pitch was a page long. So I said, can you get your elevator pitch down to five words? They’re like, no, well use ai. Then take this and condense it down to five words because that’s all anybody’s going to hear. They’re going to hear the first five words. Can you explain your business in five words? If you can do that, then you’re onto, if you can’t do that, then your idea is too complex, and AI can immediately take, take those a hundred words, a thousand words you have, pop it into chat, g p T and say, summarize this into five words and it will do it. And it’s great because it’s bringing that brevity to you to help you condense down your message into exactly what you need to say.

Tom Jackobs (30:05):
Yeah, the velocity is getting much quicker for content creators, and so I think in this age we’re going to see a lot more creativity and there’s going to be garbage as well, but I think that the cream will rise to the top for the people that are using AI to create faster content, but also bringing that human connection into it as well.

Chris Hood (30:29):
Let’s wrap it up with a final question. How do we measure this? How do we look at the success of our storytelling strategies, compare it to sales, and this can’t just be, well, how many sales did you close? Yes, that’s obviously the ultimate goal, but how do we measure the general success of storytelling?

Tom Jackobs (30:48):
Engagement is how I measure it. So I always have clients like if they’re doing a presentation, I always like to have them record the presentation so I can give some critiques. I have one client that she was giving a talk with a sale at the end of the talk, and she did her first opener impact statement, which is the do or die situation. And I heard an audible gasp from the audience. I could see people putting their phones down and just paying attention to her. So that is the power of storytelling to really get that connection for people and to bring them along into the presentation.

Chris Hood (31:34):
Hopefully everybody has been engaged to this episode. Tom, I appreciate your time.

Tom Jackobs (31:40):
No problem. Thank you for having me, Chris.

Chris Hood (31:42):
And of course, thanks to all of you who are listening. If you like what you heard, please subscribe to the show on your favorite podcast platform and leave a review. Your feedback helps us improve and grow, and if you have any questions, comments, or ideas for the show, you can connect with us throughout social media and online at Chris Hood Show, and please share this episode with your friends, family, colleagues, or anyone else looking to grow their business and start their own digital evolution. Until next week, take care and stay connected.
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