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Story-Doing: How to Blow Away Guests with a Multi-Sensory Journey

Storied experiences are a very rare thing in this world. You have a handful of attractions and hotel properties doing it well, but for the most part, stories are relegated to the ‘about’ page of a website, never to be seen or heard of again.

We know that story-doing brands perform far better (especially financially) than story-telling brands, so why are there so few doing it well? Well, perhaps it’s a lack of imaginative thinking, or maybe leaders don’t realize that it pays to bring stories to life. Either way, my goal is to help more hosts & operators tap into this.

Last month, I took on a creative challenge for a new hotel in Southern California, an hour outside of San Diego. I gave myself just one day to conceptualize an immersive story-driven journey for guests. I had zero interaction with the hoteliers - my only resource for this project was a handful of articles and the hotel’s website.

Then I went on the Business of Story podcast to reveal my process & this concept, and now I am sharing it with you! Here are a few reasons I really love this concept:

✔️ There are enough vanilla properties out in the world… working with the quirkiness of this destination opened a lot of creative doors for me! It helps if a place hasn’t been overtaken by globalization & homogenization. I didn’t have to dig too deep to find the local character.

✔️ Hot springs have a reputation for being physically healing, but I wanted to take things a step further: how could we make the connection between water not just healing the body, but also the heart & soul? And the story of creation from the indigenous people was the perfect segue for this.

✔️ My absolute favorite thing about this concept is the marriage between the quirkiness and the healing. If I had just gone off the quirkiness alone, it would have just been a spectacle without purpose. But infusing it with intention to rekindle guests’ creative fire makes it an enriching experience.

So tune in, and let me know what you think! And don't forget to download the PDF companion guide to follow along with.


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