When you want someone to trust you, what’s more important — where you live or why you care?  

It’s an obvious question, but it makes the point that sharing a personal story is one of the most powerful ways to quickly build trust. 

Your personal brand story tells why you do what you do and why you care about the people you serve. It allows people to see you as a human being.  

To better understand what a personal brand WHY story is, let’s think about what it’s NOT.  

Your WHY story is not a bio. It is not, “I grew up in the big city and went to college at 18 and got a degree in this and that.” Listing off your life won’t persuade people to trust you. 

While your biography appeals to the logical side of the brain, that’s not what you want when establishing trust. People make decisions based on emotion, and they back it up with logic. A personal brand WHY story – when designed correctly – will appeal to the emotional side of the brain. And it’s the emotional side of the brain that makes decisions.  

Your WHY story conveys a moment in time or period of life that drove you to your career and why that moment in time propels you to help a certain group of people. View my WHY story as an example.  

The goal of the story is to have clients feel like they know you. It reveals who you are with a story that aims to attract people who want those qualities you are demonstrating. When the story shows who you are by revealing your heart and your values, it will influence those clients to want to work with you over someone else who does not share those values.  

Here’s an example of a story that’s carefully designed. I have a client who tends to work with salt-of-the-earth family people.  

He doesn’t list his traits by saying, “I’m a family man who came from a farming community and has been married for 30 years to my high school sweetheart.” Instead, he tells prospects, “I grew up in a small farming community where everybody chips in to help others and marries their high school sweetheart.” 

He paints a picture of family values rather than just listing them. Demonstrating who he is attracts people from a similar background or who are drawn to those similar values.  

When putting together your personal brand WHY story, make sure that you appeal to the emotional side of the brain, not the logical side. It’s not a listing of what you have done. It is a story that speaks to people and their feelings.  

When you increase that trust, connection and likeability, people will be persuaded and influenced to do business with you.