Stories work because they touch hearts and minds. Stories appeal to the emotions of your audience. Here's an example. By the way, it's a story:
When I was an elevator sales rep, I was taught to stress quality, reliability and durability. I had a briefcase full of brochures. When that was all I had, the sale always came down to price. The buyers were not moved by my facts or my brochures. The buyers picked the lowest bidder. The sellers were lucky if they made five-percent profit on the new installation sale.
Frankly, I thought it was insane to base a purchase solely on price. Among all the elevator manufacturers, quality ranged from Exceptional to Junk. Yet they were all viewed the same by the buyers, because price was the determining factor.
I tried an experiment. I left my brochures in the trunk of my car. I walked into a contractor's office and told them a story. It went something like this:
I sold several elevator installation contracts that never went to bid. Having a smooth, reliable elevator system was more important to the general contractors than saving a little money and winding up with a piece of junk. I built greater value in the mind of the buyers. Even though my price may have been a little higher up front, my value was always much higher than my price.
...and I did it with a story...
What stories have you used to increase your sales and margins?