How Story Is Better than Opinion On Social Media

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social media storiesDo you ever see opinions like these on social media?

“Now’s the time to take advantage of this special offer.”

“Our problem is not a lack of information, it’s a lack of application.”

Social media is an attractive platform for the expression of opinion. I think there is a place for such expression, but organizations which default to opinion are missing a more attractive form of communication: STORY.

Story is meaningful. Using story allows others to find meaning through your life. When we hear other’s stories, we ask ourselves: Can I relate? Was their experience like my experience? Is their story like my story?

Those are questions of meaning. People interact at a deeper level around meaning, rather than superficially engaging around opinion.

Story invites. Opinion forces. Most opinion comes with a silent “read it and weep” disclaimer. Story invites the attention of the listener.

Here is a simple tweet that expresses the value of church involvement through story better than any opinion.

What’s the hold up?
If story is more attractive than opinion, then why don’t we use a story-tone more often?

One simple reason: It’s easy to tell someone your opinion. It’s hard work telling them your story. (tweet)

Story requires vulnerability. I was recently a part of #NBsocialday at New Beginnings Adoptions. I heard the stories of birth-mothers who wrestled with the choice between abortion or adoption.

It’s easy to talk about unwanted pregnancy with opinionated prejudice, but it’s much harder to sit in judgment after hearing the stories of afraid and alone birth-mothers. Their stories draw you in to understand the fear of an unexpected pregnancy, and the hope they need from an organization like New Beginnings.

Take 4 minutes and watch Jeremy’s Story to see first hand how effective communication comes from a place of story more than opinion.

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