Turning Statistics Into Stories in Your Business Blog

Continuing with my challenge to myself to create three Say It For You blog posts inspired by one issue of Saturday Evening Post, I next found an advertorial for ancestry.com.  This title read “How the Barber of Baden Became the Barber of Manhattan.”

Like the mother and son featured in the Royal Jelly advertorial I wrote about in my last post, this one relies on a human interest story to engage readers and to demonstrate the value of the product (the product in this case being the documents accessible on ancestry.com’s genealogy website).

“We may never know if 29-year old Frederick Detering cried as he waved goodbye to his wife and three children from the deck of the Nederland as it departed for American in 1882.  But it couldn’t have been easy to leave them.”
(Below this intriguing introduction is a section of a page from the Nederland’s passenger list of 1882.)

“Yet less than a year later that same ship entered New York Harbor again, this time with Frederick’s young family aboard…”
(Below this is a page snippet from the Nederland’s passenger list from 1983.)

“Within a few years, Frederick and his family settled in and made a life for themselves in America.  And, on a summer day in 1888, the barber from Germany became an American.”
(Below this is part of a page view of Frederick’s petition for naturalization.)

What I think is so important for bloggers for business to understand is that it’s the developing story behind the documents that brings this advertorial to life.

(Imagine an ancestry.com ad listing the types of documents to be found on their website:

  • Ship passenger lists from 1800-present
  • Naturalization certificates

Informative? Yes.  Engaging? Not in the least.)

The ancestry.com piece concludes with two types of CTA (Call To Action).

1.  A special offer: 
Free access weekend.
Search millions of immigrant records, Labor Day weekend only!
Blog posts are excellent vehicles for promoting special offers and events.

2.  An emotional appeal:

“Three records can tell so much about one life.  And there are billions of other records at ancestry.com, ready to tell your family’s stories, too.”
That would have made a great ending sentence for a blog post, light-years more effective than a mere “Call us at 1 800 ——–.

Wherever possible, turn statistics into stories for your blog!


0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply