What Comes First, Story or Audience?

It is easy to get carried away by a good story. It doesn’t matter whether you are reading or writing, when you are "in the zone",  when you are caught in the undertow of a story, it can sometimes take great effort to re-engage with the outside world. This is why, as readers, we have authors that we love. It is also, why as writers, we are sometimes confused about where the writing comes from.

It can become hard to tell what comes first, the story or the audience!

Marketers face a similar challenge. When trying to create a new market, the story comes first. The story must create a pool of gravity that will attract an audience. And the story must also be able to spread far and wide, going out into the world and returning with new reader/customers.

But the same also applies to existing markets. If your product or service dominates a market, then all your competitors will be seeking to draw your customers away. They will be seeking to create niche markets or new categories that are going to appeal to your customers. And make no mistake, we all love novelty, we all love something new, and we all love to be first with something new/cool/exciting/exclusive. Can your tired old story compete with this?

If you are constantly looking at the way your story plays out for your audiences, then you will also be seeking to constantly refine it. Don’t wait for your customers to ask for it, or simply go somewhere else. Make YOUR story the one that they love … keep the tale kicking and your brand alive. So what comes first? The story everytime.