Stories are a great way to connect with your customer. They can make the ordinary product or service you’re selling extraordinary by adding richness and experience to the sale.
In May of 2015, my wife Lisa convinced me to attend a juried art fair with her at Coney Island in Cincinnati, Ohio. As an artist herself, she has a sophisticated appreciation for fine art that I don’t. She can spend hours on end lazily drifting from one booth to the next, studying each piece and talking to the artists about their inspiration, medium, and techniques. Me, I just like to look at the pictures.
As the day dragged on, we arrived at the booth of Chris Gug (pronounced “Goog”), a photographer known for his awe-inspiring images of marine life. His gallery is full of breathtaking underwater shots of anemones, corals, sea turtles, and whales. On a mission to find a piece for our boys’ bathroom at home, Lisa eyed a picture that, to me, looked about as out of place as a pig in the ocean.
It was a picture of a pig in the ocean.
She described it as inspired genius—a cute little baby piglet, up to its nostrils in salt water, snout covered with sand, dog-paddling its way straight into the camera lens.
I thought it was a picture of a pig in the ocean.
I asked the artist what on Earth that pig was doing in the ocean. And that’s when the magic started.
Gug explained that the picture was taken in the Caribbean, just off the beach of an uninhabited Bahamian island officially named Big Major Cay. He told us that years ago, a local entrepreneur brought a drove of pigs to the island to raise for bacon. Gug went on: