Are you a good storyteller? 
Do you have a personal brand story?

Effective storytellers involve the audience, they impart emotions and they create stories that are memorable.  

Read on to learn:

  • Why being a good storyteller is a superpower (according to an influencer with over 1/2 million twitter followers!)
  • How to create your personal brand story (whether you’re young or old!)
  • Which firm might be the best brand storyteller (I bet you can guess…)

Let’s do this!



Meet master storyteller Bobby Umar. (If you haven’t already?Bobby has > 1/2 million Twitter followers! Bobby’s also a 5 time TEDx speaker, the CEO of DYPB (Discover Your Personal Brand) and the President of Raeallan Transformational Training & Speaking. 

storyteller Bobby Umarstoryteller Bobby Umar

To date, Bobby’s social media influence has garnered over a billion impressions (as in 9 zeroes)! 

I had the privilege of interviewing Bobby for this week’s ? podcast, focused on The POWER OF STORYTELLING. In this podcast, we talk about why stories are so impactful, how to be an effective storyteller, and how marketers can use storytelling for their brands.

Bobby Umar storyteller quote

One of the most important insights I learned from Bobby is the power of STORYTELLING in terms of THOUGHT LEADERSHIP.

According to Bobby, if you want to become a thought leader in your field, you should focus on 3 things:

  • your relationship building and networking;
  • your ideas and content generation; and
  • your communication skills.

So where does storytelling fit in?  Well, storytelling can elevate your effectiveness in all 3 of these things: relationships, content and communication skills. In other words,

Storytelling can fuel your thought leadership.


Brilliant! Thank you, Bobby!

Enjoy the podcast….


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bobby umar quote brands and stories

According to Bobby Umar, there are two main steps to establishing your personal brand story:

1️⃣ Identify the Theme

  • This requires acute self-awareness and hard work.
  • Look for common and significant themes across 3 sources:

              (1) self-awareness & self-analysis
              (2) input from others
              (3) online assessments 

2️⃣ Consider your Target Market and your Objective

  • For example, the target market could be your employer and your objective could be to get promoted. 
  • Or the target market could be your podcast audience and your objective could be to establish credibility and to teach them something. ?
Combine the theme with your target market and objective to craft your ideal personal brand story.

old woman reading a story
(image: Unsplash @ alexb)


Bobby’s advice to “more experienced” (yes, OLDER) folks looking to create a personal brand story:


  • ⛔️Don’t limit yourself to telling “the hero’s journey” if that’s not your true, authentic story. There are plenty of other legitimate and compelling stories!
  • ⛔️Don’t be overwhelmed by your long and rich history.
  • ✅Think about your character when you were 6 years old. How did people describe you then? Have you changed?
  • ✅Identify the themes in your life experiences. These themes can be powerful stories.(e.g. for Hillary Clinton it could be that she is an ALLY or an ADVOCATE…)



Over a year ago I interviewed Harvard Business School professor and author Jerry Zaltman about Storytelling (see that episode HERE).

I asked Jerry and Bobby both the same question, “What brand is the best storyteller?”

“I think Nike does a great job with storytelling… I think they went to someone who is a hero to many people who were purchasers of the Nike product, who was showing the strength of taking a position of being downtrodden by the league, the owners, the public, you know, various political leaders. So that certainly resonates with many people who aspire to greatness, experience deflation, experience adversity and may not succeed. And so he was a great example of someone that they could identify with. And to equate that with the product I thought was really quite brilliant.”

– Professor & author Jerry Zaltman

“It’s Nike… We are now at a time of an elevated, heightened awareness of racial injustice. Five years ago, people – so many people – mocked Colin Kaepernick. But now we have entire football teams not even showing up for the anthem, because they’re protesting and it’s becoming more and more acceptable for everyone to do that. And so that awareness has been huge. And Nike put some ads out where it had nothing to do with selling sneakers. They’re just saying, this is something we believe in, we support, here’s why it’s important. That’s it. And they’re all they’re doing is they’re selling their values. They’re selling their beliefs. That’s powerful. And, you know, the brands that are able to do that and stay ahead of the curve are the ones I think are going to come out ahead.”

– Influencer & speaker Bobby Umar

For what it’s worth, I agree. Here are 3 Nike ads that stand out for me. Enjoy!

Nike commercial olin Kaepernick
The story of perseverance, Colin Kaepernick, and #BLM.
Nike 30th Anniversary Just Do It commercial


Nik Commercial Dream Crazier
The story of women breaking through stereotypes.
Nike “Dream Crazier” commercial (and if you enjoyed that, check out this Russian ad)
Nike Commercial
My favourite: the story of our common hero’s journey. Brilliant cinematography and special effects.  If you haven’t seen it yet, PLEASE WATCH THIS ONE!
Nike “You Can’t Stop Us” commercial


Thank you (and you and you)

Thank you to Bobby Umar for sharing his expertise with us on STORYTELLING

Thanks to Sharon Mah-Gin for connecting me to Bobby! Do you remember Sharon? She’s the executive recruiter I interviewed for the episode on NETWORKINGFYI – this is the #1 most downloaded episode to-date! In that episode, we learned that Sharon is a connector. Several weks ago, Sharon emailed me and connected me to Bobby. Thanks Sharon! 

Sharon Mah-Gin
Sharon Mah-Gin

A few more thank-yous:

  • Thanks to Talk About Talk listener Marlon for reminding me how inspiring the DREAM CRAZIER and other Nike commercials are.
  • Thanks to all of you who have forwarded this ?newsletter or recommended it to others! And thanks to all of the new Talk About Talk newsletter subscribers.
  • Thanks to all of you who take the time to email me with feedback and ideas.  I appreciate it more than you can imagine. Please keep it coming! You can ? EMAIL me, or  ? RECORD your feedback anytime. 

Yes, I’m still collecting listener QUESTIONS for the upcoming “Q&A” episode.  Please ask me a question!

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Have a great week.

Talk soon,

Dr. Andrea Wojnicki - headshotDr. Andrea Wojnicki
Chief Talker & Communication Coach

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