The Missing Piece From Your Hero’s Journey Story

Storytellling for small business calls for an additional stage in the journey.

Cathy Goodwin


Image by Khamkéo Vilaysing on Unsplash.

Last week I published Episode 46 of the Strategic Storytelling podcast: How to structure a persuasive story. Shortly afterward, a few people reached out to ask if I’d heard of Donald Miller’s best-selling book, Building A Storybrand​. They wanted to know how my “persuasive story fit in.” ​

Of course, I’ve heard of Storybrand! That book has become top of mind for many large and small businesses. In fact, on job boards, we’re seeing requests for writers who know the Storybrand framework. ​Mastermind groups and marketing coaches advise their clients: “If you’re not sure how to define your business, go read that book about Storybrand.”

The book offers a broad framework for viewing your business. In contrast, my podcast and my approach focus on structuring a story as part of content creation and message strategy.

The Storybrand framework has 7 components. The hero — your client — has a problem. The hero meets a guide If you’re a service-based business, you’re the guide. The guide has a plan, which will help the hero avoid a significant disaster. With the guide’s help, the hero experiences a transformation and a happy outcome.

If you’d like the tl.dr version of the book, here’s a good summary article ​ (I don’t know the author and have no relationship to the article).

StoryBrand is one of the most helpful business books you can find.

Use the formula for everything from websites to networking. I see it as more of an overall framework whereas in Episode 46 and elsewhere, I go into the specific structure of a story you share in your marketing.

But, I sometimes get asked, where do you come in? Miller’s book talks about understanding the hero when you are the guide, as well as good suggestions you can use in your marketing.

However, I think it’s important to emphasize the difference between a “hero’s journey” in fairy tales and epic stories.



Cathy Goodwin

Create a compelling marketing message that attracts your ideal clients through your unique selling story.