I will never forget what happened just after 4:00 AM on April 21st, 2016…
It involves a robber in my bedroom, half a dozen good punches, a stolen iPad, crying children, and a case of a marketing campaign gone really, really right.
And it’s also a powerful illustration of a business lesson that could make you a lot of money.
The robber in my bedroom…
It was just after 4:00 AM. My wife is an early riser, and I’d heard her get up and make coffee.
I got up to go to our master bedroom, and as I was sitting on the toilet I heard footsteps in our bedroom. I didn’t think much of it, assuming it was my wife.
So I finish up my business, and as I flush and open the door into my bedroom, I a shadow streak by.
I immediately notice three things…
First, a flashing-red flashlight, which my wife would not be using…
Second, the glowing screen of an iPad, zooming by…
And third, a body that was clearly bigger than my wife, running toward the door of our bedroom.
I BARK (that’s how my wife would later describe it)…
“WHO THE F*** ARE YOU?!?”
He bolts out of our bedroom, toward our front door — and I follow with…
Half a dozen good punches…
I caught up to him as he was trying to get out.
I’m still in my pajamas and bare-fisted, but I manage to hit him over and over again, on his shoulder.
He shrugs his shoulder up, to protect his head.
I keep punching, trying to hit him in the face, as he struggles to get out.
I land maybe 5 or 6 solid punches, before he’s out the door.
He drops the flashlight as he scrambles across the front porch. He whips around the railing, runs through our landscaping, and takes off down the street.
I don’t pursue, but my wife immediately calls the police.
They show up quickly, and we realized he didn’t get away with much. But he took something off our bedside table.
The stolen iPad…
That’s right. He took our iPad.
He’d dropped his flashlight, and not made it out with anything else.
Now, the police response was actually really great.
They’d responded within a couple minutes. They had multiple cars at our house. And they surrounded our neighborhood, looking for anyone on foot.
And, they caught someone.
It had been so dark it was hard for me to positively ID the guy.
But he did have a backpack full of items that were consistent with what you’d bring to break into houses.
What didn’t he have on him though?
At the time, it was already older — a first generation. And he probably realized that it didn’t have enough market value to risk getting caught with it. So he likely ditched it before the police could find it in his possession.
And yet, even if that iPad didn’t have a lot of market value, our family still valued it.
And we knew that when the kids woke up, we’d have to tell them what happened.
Now, we didn’t call the iPad an iPad. We called it “the button.” Because when our son was young, that’s what he called it — because of the single button on its front.
So over breakfast, we told the kids the story. Of the robber, and how I chased him out of the house. Of the police coming, and getting a guy. And of how the button was missing.
They didn’t seem too spooked by the bad guy.
They didn’t seem bothered that I could’ve gotten hurt.
But they were in tears over the missing button.
It was in that moment that I decided I needed to do something. It was in that moment that I knew I wanted to replace the iPad.
And then, I had an idea.
A marketing campaign gone really, really right…
Remember, the break-in happened at 4 AM. By 9 AM, I was at my computer, writing furiously.
I told the story. I told about the missing iPad, and how upset my kids were. I told of my decision to replace it as fast as possible.
And then, I made an offer.
For anyone that bought in the 48 hours or so that followed, I would give a huge discount off my copy review service.
It resonated. And it was a value-driven offer.
It didn’t take long.
The first couple sales came in, and I had enough money for a brand new iPad.
Then, even more sales came in. I’d been clear that I might overshoot my target. But the people buying didn’t care because the offer would give them value either way.
They won. I won.
And importantly, my kids won — we got a replacement for their precious button, a replacement we still use to this day.
The business lesson that could make YOU a lot of money…
I tell this story again, to show you the power of story in your marketing.
I tell you this story, because if you learn to use story, you develop a huge marketing advantage.
I tell you this story, because it illustrates how telling your story can quickly turn into an advantage, even if the story itself is of something terrible.
In my Story Selling Master Class, I cover over a dozen different templates proven to work for telling stories that sell.
But there’s an even deeper lesson.
Because when you get really good at story selling, you can turn almost anything that happens to you into a selling story. You practice with the templates to internalize the skill. Until eventually, every selling message comes out with a layer of story embedded in it.
That’s when you become a breakthrough story-seller.
Yours for bigger breakthroughs,