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Storytelling for Business

Lesson 1 of 10

Class Introduction


Storytelling for Business

Lesson 1 of 10

Class Introduction


Lesson Info

Class Introduction

(applause) Thank you so much for being here. Welcome to Storytelling for Business! I'm really excited to share tons and tons of content with you today. It can get a little bit dense, so, and I talk fast because I'm from New York City, so if I go too quickly, I'll try to remember to breathe. (laughing) So, this course is perfect for you if: You have a product or offer that you need to write copy for, whether that's sales copy or work with me page or you're working on a sales funnel of some kind and you need to write copy, if you have a product in offer, this course is going to help you develop a story to inject into that copy and make it really, really powerful. It's also great if you're preparing to write your About page for your brand, and trying to understand the best way to build a brand story that really connects with your audience. This course will also help you if you want to create more brand advocates. So something that I like to talk about a lot in business is not just the p...

ower of the conversion that you're doing when you send out an email or you're marketing something, but it's also the power of brand advocacy. Because even if someone doesn't become a buyer immediately, they are likely becoming someone who wants to advocate for your brand and refer business to you, and really just shout you out to anyone that they know would be perfect for you. So having a really compelling story that connects with people intimately in this way allows you to just have those amazing brand advocates. So that's what I love so much about storytelling. It's also great if you know that you want to be selling with more authenticity and transparency. I underlined this because in the online marketing space I think that it's really, really, really, common for things to get sleazy, and creepy, and feel sort of car salesman-y. So if you're someone who knows that you want to be connecting with your audience with more vulnerability and truth, story is your vehicle for doing that. And it's also great if you've already heard a million times over that in your marketing and in selling to clients, you know that you need to be using more stories. You need to be emailing more stories out, posting more stories on social media, and you're wondering, "Well, what's the best way "for me to do that, and how do I keep generating "different story ideas as I'm generating "more content and trying to be really consistent?" So this course is gonna help you with that, too. Now, I'm Jamie Jensen (laughing). And in case you're not familiar with me, I am an award-winning screenwriter, and the creator and founder of Story School, which is a program I created that just breaks down all of the basics of story and takes you through the process of creating a story from start to finish. And I'm also a business strategist and conversion copywriter. So, in my time as a marketer, I've worked with hundreds and hundreds of entrepreneurs and helped them really get clear on their brand story and hone in on what's going to work for them most powerfully. So, yeah, I've helped them hone in on their brand and sales story. I've helped them get really, really clear about their messaging and refine the way they tell their story. And as a result, this has helped them increase their sales by up to 900%. And so that might look like how they're using their story across their website, from the moment a client lands on their website. It might look like how they're relating with their clients from social media through their sales process. And all the different touch points that they have with clients. And it can be that powerful. It's one of the reasons I love story. So, why storytelling? Is there any, do you guys have an idea, I'm curious just to know if there's an immediate thought, like, "Oh, well this is why "we need storytelling in business. "This is why it's important." Because it creates an image in the minds of the person who is hearing the story or reading the story. They don't have to remember the words, they can just remember what they saw. Yep, absolutely. So I love this quote from Maya Angelou because for me it really captures what I love about storytelling and what's important about, literally what you just said, which is creating the pathways of memory. Like what creates memory. And at the end of the day, people won't remember what you said or did, they'll remember how you made them feel. And my belief, is that the only way to get people to feel something on a mass scale is to tell them a really, really good story. Give them something to care about, right? Now, you might be wondering, "Okay, that's cool, so what's your story? "You're up here preaching all about "why is story so important. "We want to know what your story is." So my story is that I am an artist. That is my background. That's my foundation. I'm that kid that filled journals and spent hours and hours in my room drawing pictures from imagination my entire life. That was my thing. And I became really obsessed with art history in school and discovered that what I loved the most about it was figuring out the story of the artist and of the subject and what was going on. And I wanted to know every single detail about the life of the artist, and their subject matter, and why they cared about it, and all of that stuff. And so, I became a super nerd and literally created a major called dramatic storytelling at NYU for myself (laughing) because I needed to be as nerdy as possible. And I figured, I'm obsessed with storytelling, so naturally, what I need to do is I need to make movies. That's my avenue, that's my dream. That's how I'm gonna impact people with storytelling. That's the way in. So I moved to Hollywood (laughing). And I work in the film industry, and it's great. And I learn a ton, and I find that the environment of Hollywood is actually kind of awful (laughs). It's really competitive, and it's full of terrible people. There are a lot of beautiful people in Hollywood, too. Don't get me wrong. I had some amazing, amazing mentors and bosses there. I'm not saying that it's all bad. But it really becomes a competition of let's see who can work the hardest, and read the most, and do the most, and have no life, basically. And that, to me, didn't feel aligned with what I loved about storytelling in the beginning. So, I decided I was gonna leave Hollywood and go make my own film, which I did. And in the process of making and creating my own film, and releasing it digitally, I learned tons about what to do and what not to do with digital marketing. I learned tons about releasing content online, and how to build a fan base online in advance. And I became really excited about the convergence between these two worlds. How do we use digital marketing and storytelling in a way that will really, really, really get audiences excited? And what changed for me was, with making movies I realized that I felt still so disconnected from my audience. And I was like, well, I'm making a movie, and I know that there are people watching it. But I can't talk to them. I don't have their email address. I released my movie. It was on iTunes, it was on Hulu. It was number one on Hulu for the first two weeks. So great response, but I can't talk to these people who are watching my movie. I have no interaction with them. And that lack of connection made me think a lot more about how we can engage with audiences in a really connected way for our businesses and our long-term success as creators. And so that's why I do what I do now, which is basically bridging those two worlds. And what I love about it the most is for me, and from what I've learned, story really is that convergence between art and commerce. It allows you to create something really emotionally compelling and resonant that pops for your audience and gets them really invested in you and gets them to know you really well. But it can also sell for you, which is such a powerful tool. Which is why I'm a super nerd about it. Just to kind of go over a little bit more about what story can do. So, story connects us as human beings. One of the things that I really love about story is that it is human. You're already storytellers. What I'm gonna teach you today is gonna help you remember how to tell a story because you already intuitively know. We spin narratives in our mind all day long, all the time. It's the reason why when we have dreams, and they're all these disparate images that don't make sense, we wake up and we're like, "Oh, this is what happened in my dream. "This is what happened first, "and this is what happened second, "and there was this guy chasing me, "and then I had a crazy action movie dream." We make up this entire story around it because our brains are naturally doing that. We are meaning-makers and we are story-makers as human beings. So story creates meaning. It allows us to give emotion to something that is otherwise emotionless. So if you sell products, if you can spin a story around that product and where it lives in someone's life, what's the experience that they're having around it? You are lending emotion and meaning to something that otherwise wouldn't have meaning. And the reason this matters for sales is that buying is emotional. People buy because they want to feel a certain way. So how is your offer helping people achieve that feeling? And how is your marketing conveying that feeling state to your audience? Story also teaches. So, messaging is a component of story. You actually can't have a story without a message. You can't have a message without a story to carry it. So the example I like to use is that we can look at quotes on Instagram all day. But without having a story that really anchors it in reality, we don't have that actual emotional arc to integrate that meaning into our lives. It also tracks the arc of transformation. So, story actually is change. Now, I'm not gonna go over the whole Hero's Journey today because that's not what you're here for. However, when you look at the big picture of narrative structure, you are looking at how humans change. What they go through over the process of change when they decide to make a commitment to do something that is gonna transform their lives. So you are selling change when you are selling a service, or an offer, or yourself, and how you can help someone. And story is going to help you show them what that opportunity for transformation is. And story also holds interest and attention. People want to know how a story ends. So, you can create content all day, but creating something compelling means that you're gonna have to have some stakes raised, some interest, right? And so that's just a great way to keep the attention of your audience, especially when we're living in a world of attention is hard to grasp and keep right now because there's just so much content, right? There's so much out there. The Internet is saturated. Billboards everywhere. So it's really hard to grab and hold attention, and story has been the most powerful way that I have found to do it. So, what I'm gonna share with you today are the five types of stories that all business writing boils down to. And this is what I've basically found from my 15 years as a storyteller and my five years as a marketer.

Class Description

Throughout human history, storytelling has been used to draw people in, evoke their emotions and memories, make them care, and propel them to act. So wouldn’t it make sense to use storytelling to get someone to buy your goods or services?

By harnessing the power of stories, you can capture people’s attention and convince them of the value of your offering. Story is what transforms you from a marketer jockeying for a sale to a genuine person with a meaningful message.

Award-winning writer and consultant Jamie Jensen will show you how to craft a brand story that’s relevant to your business. She’ll walk you through the four main types of stories you can use and explain how each one can yield impressive results.

In this class, you’ll learn how to:

  • Figure out when and where to use story in your copy and content.
  • Decide which story to use depending on your needs and goals.
  • Create characters, objectives and obstacles for your story.
  • Change your story to keep it fresh and interesting.
  • Identify with your customer when telling your story.
  • Take on the role of expert or mentor to convince your reader to buy.


Rossella Vacchelli

I love this class. Is is fast and to the point, filled with useful information. Jamie is knowledgeble and easy to follow....please come back for more in depth classes!


Jamie provides a thorough introduction to what "tell a story" actually really means. She breaks down different types of stories plus how and when to tell which. Jamie's energy is positive and encouraging, highly recommend the class for anyone starting a business or thinking about branding yourself

Christopher Joles

Jensen does a great job providing a framework for use in deeper study of storytelling for business. Her material is clear, quite general, moves along, and enough to get the wheels turning for more information and thought.