«Return to Blog List Changing Minds with Stories?

I got to thinking during a jog this morning. With the presidential campaigns fighting for voters, how can stories actually change minds – minds that have been years in the making?

It’s not like changing someone’s mind about a product. In politics, opinions and feelings are deeply entrenched. People don’t usually feel quite so passionate about their ERP software or network router.

Everyone is brought up differently, comes from places with varying issues, and has different life experiences. Those become the filters through which each person sees the world.

With years shaping those filters, how can a campaign actually shift a person’s perspective enough to change their mind?

In this case, stories are powerful, but it has to be the right story at the right time – just like every other use of stories in sales, marketing and PR. The story that a voter needs to hear is one that matches up with his or her life in some way.

The story of the family spending $200 more a month on gas resonates with a segment facing the same issue, while the story of a business owner without affordable health insurance aligns with another.

With so many issues, how can the candidates possibly tell enough stories and get people to listen long enough to change minds?

Maybe I’m wrong and stories just can’t change the world. What do you think? (Let’s keep the discussion about “changing minds with story” rather than getting partisan. Thanks!)

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