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  • Writer's pictureRick Ray

The Right Questions


While insightful strategic brand story development is not process-driven, there is a process… a process led by brandstory’s partners! As if they were experienced fishermen, experts at casting their lures in those places most likely to catch a fish! Knowing the “right” questions to ask…


A three-stage process. Referred to as Exploration / Imagination / and Narration… with no short cuts permitted!


Is there a secret to getting it right? Well, if there is, it is in the Exploration stage of the overall process… the stage that includes multiple (the more, the better!) interviews with as many internal and external stakeholders as possible! We actually prefer to refer to these interviews as “informal chats” with those people (yes, people!) who know their brand best… from the inside. Both the good, as well as the not so good.


And – surprise! – 99% of past brand story inspiration has been triggered by something that one stakeholder actually said or shared with a brandstory partner… a single word, a phrase in passing, but unrecognized for its potential importance at that precise moment. But when all the desk research has been completed, once all the stakeholder interview field notes have been compiled and analyzed… voila! That one person’s unexpected observation or anecdote will rise to the surface as an “Ah ha!” moment for the brandstory fishermen! Their lures were cast in the most promising places (by asking the right questions!) and one of the fish took the lure and ran with it, perhaps unconsciously at the moment… but yes, voila!


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