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Episode 246 of 256

Ep. 246 - Susan Linder, Cultural Anthropologist, Founder of Emerging Media, and Author of Innovation Storytellers on Storytelling for New Innovators

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Duration: 20:20
On this week's episode of Inside Outside Innovation, we sit down with Susan Linder, cultural anthropologist, founder of Emerging Media, and author of the upcoming book, Innovation Storytellers. Susan, and I talk about the importance of storytelling to the new innovator and what companies can do to h
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On this week's episode of Inside Outside Innovation, we sit down with Susan Linder, cultural anthropologist, founder of Emerging Media, and author of the upcoming book, Innovation Storytellers. Susan, and I talk about the importance of storytelling to the new innovator and what companies can do to have their stories resonate and spread in today's changing media landscape. Let's get started.Inside Outside Innovation is the podcast to help new innovators navigate what's next. Each week, we'll give you a front row seat into what it takes to learn, grow, and thrive in today's world of accelerating change and uncertainty. Join us as we explore, engage, and experiment with the best and the brightest innovators, entrepreneurs, pioneering businesses. It's time to get started.Interview Transcript with Susan Linder, Cultural Anthropologist, Founder of Emerging Media, and Author of Innovation StorytellersBrian Ardinger: Welcome to another episode of Inside Outside Innovation. I'm your host Brian Ardinger. And as always, we have another amazing guest. We have Susan Lindner. She is a cultural anthropologist, disruptor and founder of Emerging Media, which is a brand marketing and PR agency. And we're very excited to have Susan on the show. Welcome. Susan Linder: Thank you so much, Brian. Brian Ardinger: I am so excited to have you on the show. I want to get you on because a lot of your work is really focused around this concept of storytelling. And it's so important. And so maybe we'll start off with why is storytelling so important to innovators and entrepreneurs? Susan Linder: It's so critical. And 20 years of working in tech and innovation has taught me this as the golden rule. Stanford has been very helpful to us. They have shown that a story and statistics together are 22 times more memorable than just statistics alone. And that is because the human brain is wired to receive story, not Excel spreadsheets. Not even bullet points.So, it's critical. If you want someone to remember that fantastic innovation that you're pitching, that you actually wrap it in a story with a hero, with a plot, with a conclusion. That if you want funders, investors, stakeholders, to remember it, you had better wrap that incredible data, in a story that people can take with them and actually act on it.Brian Ardinger: That makes perfect sense. And obviously we've seen a lot of companies that have done good at that. Telling stories that work. And others that have flamed out because they couldn't really communicate effectively with what they're doing. What's the process of developing a story? Especially at that early stage, when you're trying to get somebody to notice your new creation?Susan Linder: For Innovation storytelling, which is different than every other kind of storytelling, right? We're not talking about soap. Or maybe you're innovating soap, fantastic, give me a call, happy to help with a new, the next thing that will be soap. Great. But Innovation storytelling takes a different look. And so, I'm an anthropologist by training, but I was also a religion major in college. And I was fascinated by how the profits moved the word around the world.How did they get the word to move? How did they get all the early adopters? How did they get people to convert in the midst of great danger and peril? Right? Every considerable, social, racial, economic, lions eating you alive. Who got these people to adopt an idea that was not even provable right, in the empirical sense?And yet people did it. How did they do it? And so, I looked at the prophets, Jesus, Buddha, Muhammad, Moses, and tried to create the framework to understand how do you move a message around the world? How did the prophets do it? And it turns out there's five clear steps that all of the profits employ. So, step number one is history.You'll notice that Jesus didn't say that Judaism was wrong. Right. He certainly saw himself as a Jew called himself a rabbi. He was referred to as a rabbi, as a teacher. So, you take, what is historical about what came before us and say, this is the foundation of what the story is built upon. We all come from a common shared history.That makes us a group, right. That makes us a try step one. It is the same reason why we employ the term email to describe transatlantic electronic correspondence that goes through a tube under an ocean and arrives in my computer. Right? It's why we call it an inbox. Cause there used to be one sitting on your desk.It's why we use the save icon. Or it used to be a floppy disk. My kids have never seen a floppy desk. They don't even know what it is. I was cleaning out my house actually, found a floppy di
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