Thursday, December 23, 2010
The Power of Storytelling
What makes a company, or a non-profit, or a person worth evangelizing about?
In my last blog, I talked about Movember and how for 30 days I wore a mustache that made me look like a cross between a police officer and a professional wrestler. Why? What is it about Movember, or Apple, or non-profits like charity: water and Falling Whistles that inspire such an incredible army of supporters?
I believe that the answer lies in storytelling.
A mustache isn't just an awkward clump of hair on a man's upper lip, it's a means of drawing attention and creating a conversation.
There are tons of cheap MP3 players out there, but the iPod just feels different. It's simpler, sleeker, and designed to create an emotional reaction.
The war in Congo may feel distant and beyond our control, but when you meet someone with a whistle around their neck, you can't help but think that all of us can be "whistleblowers for peace."
When TOMS was first getting started, we shared my story of going to Argentina and how our goal was to give 250 pairs of shoes to the children that I met. As TOMS has grown, however, this story has evolved to include all of our incredible fans and evangelists. You are now as much apart of the TOMS story as I am. When you buy a pair of TOMS, it's you that that's helping to put a pair of new shoes on a child's feet. You aren't just a customer, but a storyteller. Every time that someone says, "hey, I love your shoes, what are they?" it's you that's helping to spread the word and inspire others to join the One for One movement.
Whether we know it or not, all of us is telling a story... is yours worth spreading?