Storytelling Tip: Be quotable to be remembered
Today’s tip from JerryBrownPR’s Storytelling Tips on the Experience Pros Radio Show
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By Jerry Brown, APR
Public Relations Consultant
We’re drawn to good quotes because they represent a clever, memorable way of saying something. Memorable is the key word here. Good quotes are easy to remember. And they have impact because they express a truth easily recognized and accepted.
Mark Twain and Will Rogers became famous by delivering one-liners about the human condition and the politics of their day. And many of their comments, including topical political comments you might expect to become dated, are just as true today as they were when they were alive.
We’ve all heard Mark Twain’s famous line that “the reports of my death are greatly exaggerated.”
Some other great quotes, some you’ll recognize and some you won’t:
- “A man who carries a cat by the tail learns something he can learn in no other way.” — Mark Twain
- “The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.” — Mark Twain
- “Even if you’re on the right track, you’ll get run over if you just sit there.” — Will Rogers
- “A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on.” — Winston Churchill
- “Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead.” — Admiral David Farragut
Every one of those quotes have two things in common. They’re short, one or two sentences. And they express a truth that’s easy to understand and accept.
Company taglines are another example of quotable quotes. For example:
- The pause that refreshes. — Coca Cola
- Don’t leave home without it. — American Express
- Just do it. — Nike
We’re bombarded with information every day. We make sense of that by ignoring the stuff we aren’t interested in and simplifying the stuff we are interested in so we can remember it. Being quotable helps grab our attention and makes it easier for us to remember what you said.
That’s my two cents’ worth. What’s yours?
Jerry Brown, APR, is a public relations professional and former journalist. He specializes in helping clients develop the content they need to tell their stories. He also helps them develop strategies for getting their stories heard, understood and remembered. And he provides media training and presentation coaching for clients who need to tell their stories to reporters or in front of an audience. 303-594-8016 | jerry@JerryBrownPR.com.
Listen to Jerry’s Tips for Telling Your Story every Tuesday at 11:05 a.m., Mountain Time, on the Experience Pros Radio Show on KLZ 560AM in Denver or at www.560thesource.com on the Internet. Missed it on the air? Listen to the archived tips.