Brands stories that resonate and connect with shoppers help them stand out on crowded shelves and appear in more shopping baskets. They inspire brand evangelism and fierce loyalty. This is accomplished through consistent and impassioned storytelling.

Today’s story is from an industry thought leader that says that usage occasion disruption is one of the most important things that every brand should be focused on. He shares that the most effective way to do this is through storytelling. Jon Sebastiani is a master storyteller. So what do I mean about that, and why is this important?

Jon grew up in the wine business, and in the wine business, people learn how to tell stories about how the grapes are unique to the climate, to the ground. They talk about the importance of a vintage and why that vintage is unique or different from any other vintage out there. They tell stories to help us identify with the products, stories that help us fall in love with a product before we’ve even tasted it. 

Think about it. What’s the difference between a $2 and a $2,000 bottle of wine? Why would anyone pay so much for a bottle of wine? It’s the anticipation. It’s the theater. It’s the story behind the bottle of wine. Jon used these strategies to create a disruptive brand, to re-create a category. His message wasn’t focused on, well, this is a blue box or this is a green box or this is something unique. Instead, he built a story around why his product was so unique, why this is something everyone had to taste, everyone had to try.

Jon’s ability to effectively tell a story that was crafted in the uniqueness of the product, again, the usage disruptive occasion, that helped consumers identify with the product that brought new consumers into this category. Today, Jon shares his story with us and, more importantly, how he uses these strategies today with the new brands that he’s created as well as the brands that he’s invested in. I’ve listened to Jon speak on stage a few times and I’ve had the privilege of meeting him in person this year as a mentor for the Expo Pitch Slam. Jon was a judge.

He’s even more inspirational in person. You’re going to love this podcast. I invited Jon to be a guest today to share with you how he uses romance to effectively tell a story, how he uses his story to change the way people talk about food, think about it. You’ve heard the story “You need to sell the sizzle, not the steak.” This is the strategy I talk about a lot. Brands need to have an effective selling story. They need to be more than just a package on the shelf. They need to help retailers grow sustainable category sales by leveraging their product. 

This is how a brand becomes more than just an ATM machine. This is how a brand stands out on a crowded shelf. This is how a brand gets their product on more retailers’ shelves and into the hands of more shoppers.

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