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  • Writer's picturefour32 MEDIA

What is a Story? Get to Know Yours, How to Tell it – and Why it Matters

A photo for a blog on how use good stories and your story for your brand or your business, taught by a professional videographer who works with businesses in barrie, orillia, muskoka and toronto and the rest of North America

Stories are everything – As Lisa Cron writes, “Story, as it turns out, was crucial to our evolution – more so than opposable thumbs. Opposable thumbs let us hang on; story told us what to hang on to.”


Ouuuie! That’s rich, isn’t it?


Or what about this quote by Joe Lazauskas and Shane Snow? “Good stories surprise us. They make us think and feel. They stick in our minds and help us remember ideas and concepts in a way that a PowerPoint crammed with bar graphs never can.”


That one just hits nicely.

So, what is a story?


Let’s think about these quotes and apply them to the business that we do every day – let’s think about our conversations and the types of content that we share online. Sometimes we can get the deer in headlights effect, and come across as extremely impersonal – afraid of expressing ourselves to our audiences.


Playing it safe in the business game is a massive mistake, especially when it comes to marketing our products and services. So, for example, if I were to sell on online course about the type of work that I do, which pitch sounds better to potential clients?


Learn how to make videos and take photos for a living – it pays well and it’s fun. You’ll definitely enjoy doing it, and it’ll make you money as well – so you may as well take this course.”




“Hey I’m Jay and I’m a videographer and photographer. Back in May, I had a horrible and LIFE CHANGING accident leading to a broken leg and some pretty intense surgery.


Naturally, I began panicking “Oh no” I thought “What now? What about my business? How will I survive?” Well it turns out I was just fine, and actually my business continued to thrive. I’m going to give you the 3 secret weapons that allowed my business to earn PROFITS while I was in bed recovering for 4 months.”




I feel as though it goes without saying that the 2nd pitch is better. But I’ll say it anyway – that’s a badass pitch. Best of all, every bit of it actually did happen, so there’s no issue from a moral standpoint – the only hump to get over is learning how to be transparent and share some vulnerable information.


But, these types of stories help to inspire potential clients to take action – and to feel a certain attachment to your products and services.


All of us have entire wells full of knowledge, experience and stories that we can share to connect with wider audiences.


While you’re thinking about what to post on social media, and what to put on your website – I implore you to dig deep in the reservoirs of your imagination and tell the honest, thought provoking stories that got you to this point.


Here’s a few questions to ask yourself, to help prime the pumps:


1.    Why did you start your business?

2.    What has been the greatest benefit you’ve experienced from building this business?

3.    What’s the hardest thing you’ve been through, and what did you learn while you worked through it and came out on top?

4.    What’s next for the business? And how are you only able to get there because of a specific difficult thing that may have happened?


Moving forward, use these questions as often as you can – and craft stories that your customer base can really resonate with.


If you own a construction company, give us a background about how carpentry may run in your family – how maybe you learned it from grandpa and now your son is learning from you too.


If you’re in the health world, maybe talk about that injury you had that inspired you to become a chiropractor. As humans, we long for meaningful connections. The better you can be at providing conduits for those connections, the higher quality your relationships with your customers will be, and it’ll pay you dividends for years to come.


If you don’t know where to start, and you’re just not interested in building out pieces of content like the ones I’m describing, you can always hire some professional storytellers.


four32 MEDIA works with small businesses and personal brands in Barrie, Orillia, Muskoka, Toronto and the surrounding areas. I spend time with clients, get to know them on a personal level, extracting meaningful stories from them.


I like to blend the idea of friendship with idea of a professional relationship, and share the stories of entrepreneurs in our communities. Please reach out anytime if it sounds like we’d be a good fit for each other.


To Your Success,

Jay Ashcroft

four32 MEDIA

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