The Science That Proves the Effectiveness of Storytelling in Business

This is a follow-up to The Science that proves the effectiveness of storytelling in business by Paul Furiga.

For several years now, marketers have tried to convince business leaders to use storytelling.

For a lot of businesspeople this is an interesting concept, but one that lacks any validity.

Sure, storytelling seems like fun. People dream of being in a room with somebody dressed up like Daniel Boone, or a pirate. Or some other fictional character who shares a rich and compelling fantasy narrative.

But what does real business storytelling look like? And is there any real evidence to ensure business leaders that it works?

We have laid a few pieces of evidence out for you, our reader.

First, I’d like you to remember a certain scenario you have certainly encountered at some point in your life. Recall the speaker who had you in the palm of his hand or the movie that left you with profound images and thoughts days after you saw it. Think of the concert that kept coming back to you in song, sound and picture a week after you attended it.

The science that makes this all happen starts in the brain.

The broad application of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and other brain scanning techniques, when combined with modern neuroscience, shows why stories work in communications.

There are several interesting university studies I could cite that prove storytelling works — I’ll cite just one example.

In this Princeton University work chronicled a few years ago by Wired magazine, study researchers Greg Stephens and Uri Hasson discovered that effective storytelling literally creates something that the good Vulcan Mr. Spock could only fake in the movies and on TV: a mind meld between the storyteller and the audience.

As the image above demonstrates, over the course of time, as an effective storyteller shares a story, good storytelling literally causes changes in the brain activity of the audience.

As humans, we’ve been sharing stories since before we had written language. There’s been a historical, compelling anecdotal sense that we keep doing that for a reason — because it works. Thankfully, we have MRIs and other tools that show us how our brains work. These tools give us the evidence to measure the anecdotal and prove the power of effective business storytelling.

Let us help you leverage the power of story. Visit our website and find out how the ageless power of stories delivers business success.

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