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January 24, 2011



I've been on the fence about responding to this post for a few days. You bring up a lot of good points, though, so I had to add my two cents.

Like you, we've been defining ourselves as storytellers for quite a while. Like you, we've made a commitment to this approach. In a lot of ways, again like you, I've felt myself more a storyteller than anything else for my entire life, no matter the job at hand. It's served me well and made life a lot more fun.

At times it's very weird and soul-sucking to be seeing so many "clearly-not-storytellers" jumping on the bandwagon, trying to brand themselves as storytellers, to make a buck. Most marketers and would-be marketers don't have a clue about storytelling.

But I'm not completely bummed out about it. Time has a way of separating the good from the bad, and if a marketer is using storytelling as merely the latest buzzword to entice clients to sign on the dotted line they probably won't last. In the meantime, it's nice seeing storytelling beginning to get the respect it deserves. It's been an important part of our lives since before caveman days. It'll survive this latest onslaught of buzziness.

Cory Fossum

Thanks for the comment, Patrick. Great points. There is a cycle to buzzwords. Eventually they stop being buzzwords and become part of the lexicon. At which time, those who hopped onto the buzzword bandwagon have moved on to other buzzwords. Leaving the rest of us to enjoy having our words back to ourselves. :-)

For a completely exhaustive debate on the topic, check out this LinkedIn thread at http://linkd.in/f412cR. My oh my.

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