Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Storytellers Never Go Hungry

In many ways, "pitching" is at the core of advertising, persuading clients to see things like their customers do, or persuading media outlets and publishers to make their product more flexible in order to reach more customers.* It's a process called rhetoric, and it's all about communicating (called, in the ad world, "selling") ideas.

The cornerstone of the process is in knowing how to communicate in a way that engages your target audience and expresses your ideas in a way that all can understand.

I came across an article last week in which an anthropologist hypothesized that, in the hard times of the Ice Age, humans were threatened with extinction because nothing was as it was before. Due to climate change, animals no longer migrated as before, crops could no longer be counted on to mature in the same places and times. The result was humans had to adapt, to literally change the way their brain operated and one of these adaptations was the development of a more sophisticated language - a modern language, if you will.

And with language comes story telling, one of the most powerful ways we communicate.

Here's a how-to from this morning's called "Let Me Tell You a Story."

If you're a fan of Mad Men, you've seen this kind of pitching, especially the Kodak pitch in the final episode of season one - "The Wheel."

My favorite Mad Men pitch.

* and many, many more