Blog post

Pressing Questions on Storytelling and The New Chasm

By Hank Barnes | June 21, 2022 | 2 Comments


As part of the upcoming virtual Tech Growth and Innovation Conference, I will be hosting two interactive, Ask the Expert sessions.  Now once I get over that I hate being called an expert (there is always much more to learn), I think these might be interesting sessions to attend.   They are on two of my favorite topics, storytelling and the New Chasm (and our Enterprise Technology Adoption Profiles).

For storytelling, I’ve got just one of many of the sessions on the topic.  Molly Beams will host a workshop on differentiation (which is closely connected); Mark Petty and Eric Hunter will have a workshop on using customer stories for lead generation;  and Suanne White and McKenzie Smith will explore why messaging falls flat (hint: stories).   Mine will be a bit different.  There is no agenda; it is a “you ask questions and I try to answer them” session.  Now, we don’t have to play the “Stump Hank” game, but we are looking to address the areas of storytelling that you find most challenging.  Maybe it is about how to deal with a complex portfolio; or how to get others to buy into the approach;  or even how to tell a differentiated story for a mainstream market.

You ask and I’ll try to answer.   Since we are virtual and will have lots of the people, I’ll have a partner helping me manage the questions.  Not ideal, but the only realistic way to make it valuable for all involved.  The one thing I probably won’t be able to do is a bit of improv–You lay out your situation, I ask a few questions, then create a story on the fly.   But even without this I’m pretty optimistic you’ll get some helpful insights.   I suspect that one of the questions might be “How do we get others in our organization to buy into a storytelling approach when they feel it is just important to talk about or products and services?”  We can hit that one for sure.

The second session will dive into the world of psychographics.  It will be an opportunity to ask questions after the keynote about topics related to ETAs, the New Chasm, regret, and more.   There may be similar questions related to how you can get people to buy into this more advanced approach, what some incremental steps might be, and other evidence that we have that makes the case for the approach.

Have any that come to mind?  Throw them in the comments and we’ll add them to the list.

I hope to hear from you in the session or later, for clients, in inquiry where we can get even more specifics.


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  • How have you convinced Old School tech product marketing managers that today’s B2B buyers are less interested in what we make (products/services) and more interested in what we make possible (meaningful and substantive business outcomes)?

    How do you convince people with a history of clinging to their status-quo mindset to consider a more enlightened approach?

    Yes, I know that this is a common challenge. And I recognize that change management leadership is not for the faint of heart, but I’m growing weary of addressing the same passive-aggressive resistance, over and over again…

    • Hank Barnes says:

      It’s a never ending fight. But I view it a little like erosion…keep at it and things change. I do see some evidence of acceleration, but for businesses founded on creating change, the internal resistance to change is a bit confounding.