Because we love what stories make us feel

It’s not the physical properties of a luxury auto, candlelight dinner or model-thin looks that people want. What they want are the feelings, the emotions, the experiences that we perceive those things can make us feel. The emotion a story delivers directly influences how we feel about ourselves vis-à-vis a product, a service or competitor.

A perfectly happy client can turn into an unhappy customer if he hears another client received a better offer, then turn back into a happy customer when you assure him the story he heard was false, circulated by an unethical rival. If you think about this, nothing physically changed. But your story about reality completely changed his perceptions of what is true, and consequently, real.

Change the story and you change the meaning of factual reality. Appreciating the power stories can exert is both an exciting opportunity and awesome responsibility. As Obi-wan Kenobi memorably told George Lucas’s reluctant hero, “Use the Force Luke, use the Force!”