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Storytelling is a powerful tool in business. Compelling stories grab people’s attention, help communicate a more memorable message and inspire action among important stakeholders. In a recent study by the Stanford’s Graduate School of Business, 63 percent of people remembered pitches that use stories, while only five percent remembered those that used statistics alone.

In most organizations, data about customers typically resides in silos. Customer insight is often delivered as one-off reports which are closely held by the market research team. It is generally used once, and then begins to gather dust on a virtual shelf. Making matters worse, customer insight is often only used for planning purposes (rather than across the customer lifecycle) which severely limits its ongoing usefulness in the enterprise. Storytelling changes this.

Strategic storytelling helps amplify the feedback and insight of your customers. Confident decision-making requires context, but isolated data points from one-off surveys can lead you to draw the wrong conclusions. To truly understand the meaning of your customer data, you need to understand the “why” behind what your customers are saying and how this relates to other data points. This builds organizational memory and as a result, collective wisdom develops across the enterprise. This allows you to make better decisions about your products, your customer experience approach and your marketing strategy and tactics through a deep understanding of your customers’ evolving attitudes and motivations.

The power of storytelling inspired a key new feature in Vision Critical’s Sparq platform. Aptly called Stories, this feature helps easily organize and share customer feedback and data from insight communities into a cohesive and compelling narrative. Stories extends the influence and power of customer insight-driven decision-making by efficiently scaling storytelling and building organizational memory of customer intelligence.

3 ways Stories can up your game in customer intelligence

This new feature in Sparq makes customer intelligence more valuable for Vision Critical customers by providing something crucial in business decision-making: context. Here’s how it’s done.

  1. Integrate historical data with new insight.

Say you’re considering a new product feature and you’ve run an activity in your insight community to assess its feasibility. Real-time customer insight is useful in making this decision, but it’s also important to consider existing customer data to get the full picture.

With Stories, you can search through the results of past activities and uncover relevant information. You can add a single choice chart, a table, a heatmap or other response types into your story. Add color and context to your story by compiling past results and including additional narrative.


Search for Stories in Vision Critical's Sparq platform Search across all your historical data to build a comprehensive, compelling narrative.



Add heatmaps in your Stories in Vision Critical's Sparq platform Select the most compelling charts and graphs to tell your Story.



Add items into your Stories in Vision Critical's Sparq platform Add content to your Story with a single mouse click.


Stories provide a central reference for key data and insight. They can be used as the managed source of “truth” about a business insight and shared throughout the organization. With Stories, companies can develop progressive customer profiles and view customer data in the context of current issues. The result? More confident, customer driven decision-making.

  1. Get insight more quickly.

Customers using Stories have found that this new feature greatly increases their productivity, saving several hours per story when compared to the previous manual approach they used. Stories can be created in a few mouse clicks. Instead of downloading the data, manually searching for the related information, and creating PowerPoint reports, you can focus on finding actionable insight within the data. It frees up more time for analysis versus assembling the data.


Easily create reports with Stories, a feature in Vision Critical's Sparq platform Organize and format your content to build a compelling Story.


And because Stories uses information from historical activities, it reduces the need to inundate your customers with unnecessary and redundant surveys and discussions. This significantly reduces the risk of alienating your customers with repetitive queries for the same feedback—one of the major pitfalls of spam surveys.

If you have an urgent business question, you can find what customers have already told you, and use Stories to contextualize that insight.

  1. Share the collective wisdom of your customers with key stakeholders and decision makers.

When using Stories, you can collaborate with multiple people in your company. Once you’re ready, you can easily share your story broadly to all stakeholders. Because this resource is mobile-friendly, stakeholders and decision makers can access it regardless of where they are and what device they’re using. You have confidence that your Stories and recommendations can be shared broadly, and not be used out of context because you have a centralized copy of the Story that you can control.


Use Stories in the Vision Critical platform to share mobile-friendly reports viewable in any device. Share your Story to any device.


Now available to all Vision Critical customers

Since becoming available earlier this year, Stories has helped Vision Critical customers worldwide (including The Limited, an iconic fashion retailer, and SMUD, the sixth largest community-owned electric service provider in the U.S.) inspire action in the organization by leveraging strategic storytelling. We’re excited that Stories is helping customer intelligence pros produce the kind of actionable insight they can use to improve the customer experience, create better products and enhance their marketing strategy.

If you’re interested in learning more, please get in touch with us.

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