The Corporate Storyteller

Expert tips on management communications and the power of storytelling

Thursday, April 01, 2010


The Power of Story Illustrated: Subway's Jared

In Tuesday's Fast Company column, Dan Heath hearkens back to the Story of Jared, the guy who lost 250 pounds by eating Subway's low-fat sandwiches every day--and was the star of the advertising world for months. As Heath points outs, the phenomenon was due to the power of story over a list of facts.

Contrasting the impact of the real-life story with a previous campaign that focused on the stats (7 sandwiches under 6 grams of fat), Heath points out the key elements of the Jared story that made it so effective: it was unexpected to learn someone could lose weight by eating fast food; the results were concrete (the striking difference in Jared's appearance and especially, the enormous size of his pre-diet pants made it real); and the story of touched people emotionally when they learned how debilitating obesity is. Here's the link to Heath's entire column:

Note that he listed my book, Around the Corporate Campfire: How Great Leaders Use Stories to Inspire Success, as one of his favorite resources on the subject. (Thanks, Dan!)
To buy a copy, go to:

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