Entrepreneurs: Use storytelling to reach prospects who’ve heard it all before

Cathy Goodwin
3 min readAug 27, 2021

Copywriting tips to replace that tired old fish story.

Image from Damir Spanic on Unsplash.

Anita just got back from a family reunion. Everything went well, she said, except for that one uncle who shows up every time and tells the same story over and over again.

“A fish story — the one that got away? No, but it might as well be. It’s a great story about how he met his wife right after he left the Navy and got lost in New York.

“The new people who just married into the family? They love it,” she said. “But the rest of us have heard it so many times. We just tune out. You can see people trying to sneak away without hurting his feelings.”

Image from Depositphotos.

I remembered Anita when I listened to a webinar last week. The host began with a story. “I left corporate life after too many nights away from home. I wanted more time with my family. So I started a business. A couple of years later, I hit a wall. I spent more time on my business than I’d ever dedicated to my corporate job. I was doing everything … marketing, meeting with clients, accounting, social media. Something had to give. So I came up with a solution…”

Does this story sound familiar? The solution might be “webinars,” “outsourcing,” or “deciding to take every Friday off.”

It’s about business, but it’s really a tired old fish story.

The first time you hear this story, you resonate. You’re curious about the solution the storyteller found.

The second time, you might admire the way the storyteller shares her experience.

The third time? Personally, I tune out. My first thought is, “Who told her to share that story?”

Image created by Cathy Goodwin.

The truth is, people who have been around the Internet know all the stories. They won’t be inspired by advice like, “You’re not selling — you’re inviting.” Or, “The more you describe…

Cathy Goodwin

Create a compelling marketing message that attracts your ideal clients through your unique selling story. http://cathygoodwin.com