In a wonderful TEDx discussion on “How to listen to music with your whole body,” the incredible Dame Evelyn Glennie challenges her audience on how they actually experience sound. She begins by playing a piece of percussion music exactly as written. She then plays the piece, but interprets the music — completely changing the way she and her audience experience the same song.
She goes on to discuss how music can be played and enjoyed through the whole body, not just the ears (did I mention that she is profoundly deaf?)
At one point in the presentation she tells a story about how an instructor sent her off to learn ways to play her drum without using her drum sticks. She experimented with multiple, alternative ways to create — not just sound, but music and audio experiences.
Wait for it…
What does this have to do with your brand story? Everything.
Your brand story is not just something to be told, tweeted, talked to and traded, it is something to be nuanced, experienced, felt, seen, smelled and shared. Your brand story becomes different with each telling — and that does not mean a loss of control — it can mean that others interpret your story and then share it in ways that most impact them and their audiences.
Dame Glennie mentions that when listening to a piece of music the audience should be aware that they may not feel exactly the way the performer did — they may not feel happy or sad or scared. They come with their own emotions and thoughts to a performance. The same is true of your brand story.
Think of a still pond. You drop a pebble into the center and it creates a ripple that spreads outward, carrying your story. If another pebble is dropped into the pond a few feet away, the original ripples will continue, but they will now be added or subtracted from new currents in the pond. This is how your brand story is interpreted and shared by others.
Experiment with your brand story and enable your audiences to interpret it as well. Embrace their interpretations.
What do you think?