Scott Donald Carper-Building A Story Brand

Author of Book: Donald Miller
Date Read: April 2, 2023

Book Report

Why did I choose this book?
This is another book that switched things up. “Purple Cow,” and this book were recommended to make
sure I am covering a variety of leadership topics. Also, both are supposed to be among the best books in
their field. I am rapidly making it through Matt Petersen’s Top 20 books that people must read. I was
hesitant to read this book as I have read so many books on leadership. But this book was outstanding. It
focuses on topics related to my work experience. I wish I had read it before I started in advertising….HA.
Alas it is not that old.

What is the book about?
This book was all about telling stories to deliver information. Not your company’s story. Customers
don’t care about your story; they care about their own. Your customer should be the hero of your story.
Marketing has changed. This book preaches that companies that invite their customers into a heroic
story will thrive. “Pretty websites don’t sell things. Words sell things.” Clarifying our message is key to
having our customers listen. If we aren’t helping them eat, drink, find a lady/man, fall in love, build a
team, experience the meaning of life, or stave off the impending apocalypse then people aren’t paying
The book has an interesting take that you can’t create too much work for the brain. Literally and
figuratively there’s a survival mechanism within our customers’ brain that is designed to tune things out
should we start confusing them (or making them work too much).
The world revolves around the customers (and their paradigms), regardless of how altruistic, generous,
and selfless a person we may be. Each day is quite literally about how we encounter our world.
Potential customers feel the same way about themselves. They are the center of their world. FOR
YEARS I HAVE BEEN saying the way to get people engaged is to let them talk about their favorite
subject…. which is…. themselves.
Every story is about somebody who is trying to solve a problem, so when we identify our problems, they
recognize us as a brand that understands them. The more we talk about our customers’ experience, the
more interest someone will have in our brand.
The major idea I took from this book is the day we stop losing sleep over the success of our business and
start losing sleep over the success of our customers is the day our business will start growing again.

What did I learn?
When I was in college my dad used to get frustrated with how wordy I was. I didn’t write concisely at all
(nor make anything simple). I remember getting an A – minus in legal writing (which was a class I
struggled with…and a departure from the normal A’s I was accustomed to getting). This book reminded
me how important it is to deliver a clear concise message. It also made me reflect on the companies I

have worked for (including my own) …. Messages/Websites should be as clear and concise as possible. I
can absolutely see myself using the principles of this book. (Dad comment: It will be easier for Scott to
follow this advice when he can easily edit what he produces. That is not the case in camp.}
But the most important thing that happened…happened while reading this book. I work out multiple
times a day…I read while I bike. I often just ride and think. I analyze anything and everything. I used to
get upset that I did this. I thought why I can’t just think about something once and leave it alone. That’s
not me. But I concluded this is a gift. Often, I have analyzed a situation so well I am not only prepared
for whatever happens…. I have command of the situation. Anyway, while reading this book I had an
epiphany about what I wanted to accomplish in the short term. I want to do everything to change RDAP
in as positive a way as possible. That means I need to take a more intense leadership role…which I am
now doing. A plan I have put into action is already underway (My superpower). I want to make the
experience as positive for others as I can. That feeling is very empowering and something I am very
excited about.
I am happiest when I am learning or helping others. In this case I am doing both and that is fantastic.