One of my favorite things about my job is that I get to interview a lot of people. Some interview subjects are eager to talk to me. Some clearly aren’t. “I’ll talk to you but I don’t know what you’re going to get out of it. I’m pretty boring,” they’ll say.
Then I silently call bullshi*t on that and start asking questions. And you know what? That statement is never (or at least very, very rarely) true. If you ask the right questions, you can find something interesting about anyone. Finding out what makes some tick is an interesting business.
Now think about your brand. Look at your blog. Are you in the business of telling people how boring you are?
Customers Want to Know You
AdAge recently covered a speech by GE CMO Beth Comstock, in which she made this point: Companies have to start telling the stories of their brands if they want to make an impact.
This isn’t news, right? So then why are so many brands holding their customers at arm’s length? We all know that people don’t build relationships with corporations – they build them with people.
There are stories in your company. No, you probably didn’t have to fight off bloodsucking zombie koalas at any point (although if you did, we certainly want to hear about it), but that doesn’t mean that there are no tales to tell. People most certainly laughed and cried while building the business. There were setbacks. There were victories. I’d wager there were even times when someone in your company may have helped a customer in such a profound way that that staffer felt all warm and squishy on their drive home later that night.
It’s time to tell your stories.
I can smell your fear. You’re still afraid your company is boring. Your business is pretty dull. Every day is the same. So how do you get to the stories?
Let your content creators and brand journalists roam. Throw off the shackles and let your writers wander into other departments, business units and regions. If you let writers lead with their curiosity, I promise you, you’ll find your brand’s stories.
So that’s your assignment for today: Give those peeps a hall pass and let them do their thing. Give them room to surprise you. You won’t be disappointed.