This image is the Best of Show winner at the current exhibition of local artists at the Triton Museum of Art in Santa Clara. It is a charcoal drawing by Susan Krough from San Jose and its title is "The Letter."
I stopped in front of this image, riveted by the scene, and wondered what was in the letter the young man is running to deliver.
This is visual storytelling at its very best.
No words are needed, you can create your own story, but the image conveys desperation by the young man and yearning by the person on the bus to receive it. I guarantee the letter is not a bank statement.
How well can your sales team use pictures and tell stories to rapidly convey meaning and build trust and engagement?
A Bright New world in visual Storytelling
Today visual storytelling is virtual and the Zoom call is the medium for the message.
The message has changed too. We like to use whiteboards vs PowerPoint to get our message across. This places a higher level of effort on the salesperson as communication is much more interactive and salespeople must prepare in advance for every call.
- Whiteboards are used to enhance communication by adding a visual dimension to the conversation and differentiate throughout the sales engagement vs. a canned PowerPoint pitch.
- Challenger Whiteboard stories, help to reframe a buyer's perspective, tell a compelling "why change" story and convey "who-we've-helped" stories of buyers just like them who overcame challenges and implemented the solution to create value for their organization.
- Whiteboard usage has evolved too, from story-telling to story-capture. This is a powerful new engagement idea, where customer-facing teams use whiteboards to visually engage buyers in conversation around their current state challenges, their vision for a future state, and the impact that change will have on the organization.
- Technology has changed too thankfully. I well remember trying to whiteboard over slow Internet lines using Webex, a Bluetooth pen, and a paper drawing surface... lots could go wrong, and often did!
- Numerous options exist for digital whiteboarding using tablets and digital pens and paper as well as physical whiteboards and flip-charts. Again they are the medium for the message, the message is what counts.
- The salesperson can simply drag and drop company-approved pre-drawn images onto the drawing surface and speak to the growing visual story as it automatically builds.
- The salesperson can drag computer-generated hand-drawn text onto the drawing surface to give meaning to the image being created.
- The magic of the salesperson's user interface can be shielded from the buyer who simply sees the hand-drawn output appear on their Zoom screen.
- Salespeople can annotate the image and invite the buyer to annotate and mark up the images collaboratively.
A Call to Action
The whiteboard stories used in business today are unlikely to convey the same emotional punch as "The Letter", but they are extremely useful in adding a visual dimension to the conversation to help salespeople engage and build trust and convey meaning, as well as capturing the buyer's story.
If you need help elevating the emotional impact of your story to connect with what buyers really care about, send me an email and we can discuss.
If you would like to see what's new in Whiteboarding, Corey Sommers and Enableocity have developed CleverPad, a new approach to virtual whiteboard storytelling and we invite you to participate in our free Beta program.