“One of the things that I think is really important is trying to find that Venn diagram between the questions and the things that you can confidently speak about. And then, thinking about what you want your target audience to take from that,” explains Melissa Ripp, Owner and Founder of Pea Pod Marketing and PR Consulting, a full service marketing communications firm for female entrepreneurs and executives. Today, Melissa joins host Kiley Peters to talk about the best storytelling strategies for small businesses.
Melissa was in third grade when she realized she wanted to be a writer. And ever since, she has set out to use her expertise to help female entrepreneurs and executives craft the best possible stories for their brands. While there are several ways to go about this, the common factor is vulnerability and a willingness to share personal stories from your past. People are often taught to believe that vulnerability is equal to weakness, but actually it can be a strength as it helps people connect more to you and your story and can be a way to showcase your authenticity. Some ways to be more comfortable with storytelling are to make a list of topics you feel confident speaking about, consider key learnings that have worked for you and your business, think about your origin story or times from your past that have gotten you to where you are today, and consider your personal value set and times in your life that your values have come into play.
Storytelling is a great way to connect with your audience on a deeper level. People are more likely to want to work with businesses that they feel reflect their own values and business owners who feel relatable and authentic. It can be intimidating to peel back the layers of yourself and be vulnerable publicly, but it can do wonders for your business growth.
“I really wanted to help women understand that they can feel empowered to do all of those things on their own. It just starts by sharing their story.” (3:38-3:48 | Melissa)
“One of the things that I just think is really important is trying to find that Venn diagram between the questions and the things that you can confidently speak about, and then, kind of thinking about what you want your target audience to take from that.” (5:51-6:08 | Melissa)
“Every single thing you go through in your life is all writing material.” (17:23-17:27 | Melissa)
“I do start a lot of my thought leadership and storytelling clients on LinkedIn just because I feel like it is a great way to A.) not only get your thoughts out quickly, but also B.) it really serves as a nice testing ground for confidence.” (22:40-22:56 | Melissa)
“I've had a ton of people that have said, what got me most comfortable and talking about myself was talking about myself in the context of other things and other people. And that made it a bit easier to pull off or pull apart those baby onions and start kind of getting to the core of me.” (41:32-41:50 | Melissa)