Got a minute? We’ve got an idea. #2

Here’s the second in our series of short videos about strategic positioning and messaging for cleantech innovators.

Why story matters in cleantech

It’s sad, but not surprising, that so many startups fail to connect with their intended audience. There’s nothing easy about getting people to invest—psychologically or otherwise.

Chances are, you have to pitch the category as well as your offering. That’s a lot of education. Many cleantech entrepreneurs respond to the challenge by doubling-down on the technical and financial details underpinning their hypothesis or their business model. Which is kind of like adding a page of footnotes when what you really need to do is rewrite your executive summary.

And then there’s the flip side of the coin, where a company founder waxes passionate about the potential for his invention to save the world. Passion is great, but without proof of concept, it’s entertainment, not enlightenment. Tell people the facts and let them figure out how they feel—never the other way around.

So how do you introduce people to a lot of new information without losing them? Tell a story. Technology is so often described. We think it should be told. In every cleantech innovation there is a story: a setting, a protagonist, a destination. Obstacles and crises, comebacks and resolutions. And sequels!

There is drama in climate change and the strains on our global resources. But there’s also drama in problem solving, in the quiet epiphanies that give birth to innovation. Does a great story make for a great technology? Nope. Does it make for a good investment? Nope. But if you have a great technology and you are a great investment, a great story will accelerate the spread of your idea.

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