Business owners who go through my online copywriting course Nurture Email Mastery often say:
“I liked the course…”
“I liked the examples…”
“It gave me skills…”
“But I don’t have time to use them!”
“I’m busy running my business,” they continue. “I’m dealing with clients. Fighting fires. Making plans. Closing sales. I don’t get time to think… let alone write any copy.”
If that describes you, you’re not alone, and I have a solution.It’s time to block off three days, switch off the ‘to-do’ list, and put your story to profitable use…
The Big Story Workshop is a live three day storytelling workshop for busy business owners. In an intimate group setting you’ll untangle your story, decide which parts to tell in what places, and produce at least one story you can use immediately in your marketing.
This event will assume zero knowledge. You don’t need to be a ‘copywriter’ to attend. Eventually you may not even do most of the writing yourself.
You DO need to understand the importance of telling your story… you DO need to have a business where trust underpins every sale… and you DO need to be prepared to study.
Here’s what we’ll cover, over the three days.
On Day 1 we start off by asking WHY. Why tell your story at all? Why take a less direct sales approach? Under what circumstances is telling your story effective?
We’ll explore the different forms a story can take in your marketing. (Often a ‘story’ doesn’t have to look like a story - did you notice the 'story' at the start of this page?). We’ll talk about the inherent tension at the heart of storytelling in business, and why most stories are told badly (if at all).
We’ll look at the different types of call to action you can embed in your story. We’ll look at the pros and cons of different story formats, particularly focusing on the ‘open sandwich’ and the ‘closed sandwich’ structure.
You’ll finish Day 1 by discovering the true secret to effective storytelling: research. I’ll show you my methods, and you’ll also take ideas from the other attendees. By the end of Day 1, you’ll never run out of ideas to write about ever again.
On Day 2 we introduce the Uncover Your Story process. You’ll explore your story in depth with another participant (with me as facilitator). You’ll pull events out of your past that you never imagined might be relevant to your business communications. The factors that determine your current circumstances stretch back WAY further than you think!
You’ll learn how to take your time as you tell your story (logical people always want to rush). You’ll learn how to drill down on interesting details. You’ll learn how to spot patterns that re-emerge. You’ll begin to draw connections between old events, and newer ones. By the end of Day 2, you’ll have been through one iteration of the full Uncover Your Story process. You’ll have built up a bulk of raw material you’ll be able to draw on in Day 3…
Day 3 is about output. We’ll connect threads in your story to your current sales message. We’ll look at different options for telling your story, including Facebook ads, lead magnets, email sequences, print media, packaging. You’ll come away with a plan that is right for your audience and business objectives.
You’ll learn how to tell your story in a way that facilitates your sales message, rather than distracts. You’ll learn how to seamlessly link from story to content. You’ll prioritise the stories you want to tell. Then in the remaining time you’ll make a start, using the opportunity to get live feedback from both me and the other group members.
The event will be intensive, but there’ll be plenty of time to think. This isn’t the type of event where you take notes for three days. This is a doing course. You’ll implement the things you learn immediately. You’ll have the time to explore the process, and make mistakes in a safe environment. You’ll learn from the mistakes of others.
In the evenings you’re free to do as you please, but you’re invited to join me on an informal tour of my favourite Sheffield haunts. In an enjoyable way, you’ll reflect on the things we’ve covered. You’ll continue the conversation with your fellow delegates.
By the end of the three days, you’ll return home having made a start on telling your story. You’ll have at least one story you can put to use in your marketing immediately. You’ll have a complete plan of what stories you need to prepare next. Or if you’re too busy to do the writing yourself, you’ll be able to brief a copywriter, supplying them with your Uncover Your Story notes, and specific instructions on how to link story to content.
This won’t just be a ‘feel good’ event. You’ll feel good because of the progress you’ll have made, and the lifelong skills you’ll have developed.
The course has been very collaborative, and I absolutely love that. All the participants learn from each other, in addition to the person running the workshop. You have a lot of answers and a framework which is very useful, and like many things it’s more knowing what the right questions are rather than the right answers. Being so close to what I do I just don’t see certain things, and you’ve helped me look over things with an expert marketer’s eyes. And also you have other business owners looking at it from their experience. Pulling that together works well.
I really think everyone who is serious about marketing should take this course. Story is so fundamental and very few people know how to do it really well. I think the process you have and teach is amazing. I think a lot of people get hung up on not seeing the stories in their own lives, when every business is built on stories whether you like it or not. This [course] makes it a lot more explicit, and allows you be more deliberate when you are putting your message together. And doing it in a way that is meaningful for whoever it is you are trying to reach.
The food, and the pubs, and the whole English experience has also been a highlight of the workshop, and certainly something worth mentioning.
By the time you leave on Day 3, you’ll have:
The price? £1,595. With a payment option if you would prefer to pay over time. If by the end of Day 3 you aren’t completely satisfied, I’ll refund every penny. All you’re really risking is the time away from the office, and the cost of accommodation.
Upcoming course dates will be announced shortly. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to express your interest.
If anything would have stopped me coming to the workshop it would have been: “can I afford to take the time out for three days?” I considered not coming because of the time, but it’s been absolutely worth it. I was about to push the button on some projects, but knowing what I now know I’m pushing hold until I have implemented what I now know, and then those projects will become more effective.
I’ve discovered the importance of storytelling, and the importance of telling stories that will either connect with our existing users to tell them about additional features, or potential users to tell them about the benefits of our software… and how the story is the lead that will cause people to take interest.
The experience of the event has been great. It’s made me do some soul searching about some personal stories; it’s made me not frightened to tell the downs in my story which I’d normally gloss over to make everything look great.
Even if you don’t intend using the copywriting techniques yourself, when you come away and understand the copywriting aspects you can find someone to do the writing for you. I’ve now got the confidence to go out and find another copywriter, and speak to them at a level where I’ll know whether or not they will actually produce what I need. So it’s given me the skills to do it if I want to do it, but also the skills to hire someone else if I need to.
One of the processes you go through on the course is getting really clear on what you do, who you do it for, and how you do it. So during the workshop I recognised that I help Infusionsoft partners solve challenging problems in their client’s Infusionsoft apps, without hacks and workarounds. Which sounds like a throwaway statement, but it’s not until you get clear in your own mind about what you do and who you do it for that you can be clear in the stories you’re telling.
The biggest thing that would have stopped me coming was the amount of time you have to take out of your business and your personal life. My wife has been at home with the kids for the last three days, and I’ve had a few client issues I’ve had to deal with while I’ve been on the workshop. But I’d without doubt say that these three days have more than paid the investment in time… let alone the money. Money is money, but it was the time that was an issue for me.
One of the biggest outcomes for me has been the sheer variety of stories you can use in your marketing, and the primal power of stories. I trained as an actor, I worked as an actor, but somehow I’ve divorced that from my life as a business owner. My biggest realisation over the last three days is that you can tell stories about almost anything, and link them to your sales message. I was like: “oh my goodness – the world is full of stories. I can never run out of content!”
A block for me in the past has been that I’ve got an app that integrates to Infusionsoft, and I can tell people how it came about. But how many times can I tell that story without it getting boring?
Just at the end of the course a story that came to me from my first professional acting job in 1993. Having explored that within the group, the outcome after a couple of hours was a pretty fully formed story-based Facebook ad for my target audience, which will be very different to any other ad they’ve seen on Facebook.
The magic sauce from the Big Story Workshop is being able to reconnect to your sales message at the critical point in a story, in a way that doesn’t seem clunky or forced. It’s real, authentic and just flows. It’s been eye opening… a great experience over the last few days.
Rob knows where all the great beer is and all the great food is – in Sheffield at least – and it’s definitely been an experience! I’ve been on three-day courses before and this has been totally different – for the better.
This workshop is NOT about you as a business owner becoming a writer. That’s something I was a little hesitant about. I can write, and enjoy writing… ish. But I don’t want to be a professional writer. I don’t want to BE you [Rob]. I don’t want to be writing for the majority of the working day.
This course is about understanding the process of using your stories. So that if you don’t want to do the writing – and fair play if you do – you’ll have the tools to brief your own writers in a way you can be confident will produce emails, Facebook ads, blog posts, any form of content that will be imbued and infused with story. You’ll be doing something in your marketing that I suspect none of your competitors are doing.
Q: Will the event be recorded?
A: No, this is a workshop format, where a lot of the time you'll be working on different skills or techniques.
Q: Is the event catered?
A: To keep the price of the event down, food will not be provided. Tea, coffee and water are provided by the venue, and there are a host of great eating and drinking options all around.
Q: Which pubs are we going to?
A: That's for me to know, and for you to find out!
Got other questions? Email email@example.com. Or call 07432 082738 (leave a voicemail).