The old story.

Storytelling.  This is not a new idea.  Completely inauthentic, manufactured, magical fictions concocted to sell things have long been potent weapons of commerce.  Take a look at this ancient classic from advertising guru Hal Riney.  It’s a story (winter preparations) within a story (two fictional inventors) selling a completely inauthentic (made up) product. It isn’t true, but has an element of truth to it.

All ads do not have to be stories. That’s the trouble with defining what we do so narrowly.  We sell (or else, as David Ogilvy famously put it.)    You might do that as a story, as part of a billowing content feed about lyrical aspects of your brand. Or you might do it by offering 50% off for a limited time only. That’s not a story.  It’s called a sale.  You say it loud and make the logo big.  End of story.




David Fowler is a writer and executive creative director in New York.
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