Bit Pickles & Fuzzy Olives

In The Million Dollar Pickle (retitled after a reader suggested the original title When Stories Don’t Sell wasn’t that good), I retold a story about how a single bad customer service experience turned a business author and speaker into a negative PR machine for a local supermarket. What sparked that post was my OWN version [...]

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The Dark Side of Anecdotes

The power of anecdotes to persuade (see Why Stories Sell and Your Brain on Stories) is established, but there’s a dark side to that power. Quite simply, an effective story can take over our brains to the point where we disregard more valid information: reliable statistics, the opinions of true experts, and so on.

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Why Stories Sell

We know that anecdotes can be a convincing way to sell a product, particularly if the story is told by someone we trust. (See Your Brain on Stories.) Evolutionary psychology may offer a reason. Human brains evolved when we had just two ways to learn about dangers and rewards in their environment: personal experience, and [...]

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