The Critical Thing to Do BEFORE You Storm The Castle

When he was a young college student, my wife’s great-great-grandfather joined the revolution.

He and his pals tried to overthrow the German government.

The year was 1833, and young Adolph Wislizenus “stormed the castle” with a band of student revolutionaries in Frankfurt.

Their plan: Sneak-attack a few arsenals. Capture the soldiers. Take the guns. Arm the civilians. Topple the government.

Everything went just as planned until they got to the “arm the civilians” part.

Here’s an excerpt from Adolph’s biography:

The arms captured at the arsenal were distributed among the immense crowd attracted by the scattering shots fired… (The revolutionaries) called upon the people to seize the arms and establish the Republic. “Help yourselves, gentlemen, don’t be bashful,” cried one of Adolph’s comrades, as he handed out the arms to the gaping mob. “Today we are having a revolution all over Germany.” An hour later he was shot dead, refusing to surrender…The people were not ripe for revolt. The blow struck them unawares. A few, indeed, took arms, but most of these dropped them soon and furtively glided away.


The revolutionaries thought they had something irresistible to sell to the people:

Overthrow the rotten government. Establish a republic. Freedom for all.

Sure, there’s a little risk. You might get shot. You might end up in prison. But what’s a revolution without a little risk?

The people said, “No thanks.” They weren’t ready for what the revolutionaries were selling.

Today, in business, we call that a failure of market research.

It’s a simple idea, really:

Research your market, top-to-bottom. Discover everything you can about your prospects…

…know their problems…

…know their dreams…

…before you try to sell them something.

If the people aren’t ready to buy a revolution, call off the castle-storming.

The same simple idea applies to you.

I’m not suggesting you launch a revolution.

I’m suggesting you grow your business.

And if you want to do that, you need to design products and services that solve problems and make dreams come true for your target market.

There’s a big idea here that’s easy to miss:

I’m NOT talking about marketing here. I’m talking about product development.

Don’t create the product or service unless you research the market and confirm there’s a problem to solve and a dream to fulfill.

If you can’t confirm it, don’t build it.

And here’s the really great thing: All that market research will pay off when it’s time to market the product or service. You’ll know your market…

…and that will make it much easier to craft stories that will attract prospects, keep them tuned in, and inspire them to act.

Wondering where to begin with market research? Wondering how to uncover prospects’ problems and dreams so you can deliver irresistible products and services?

Sign up for a Free Story Assessment.

For the rest of this week, I’m offering my calendar to anyone who wants to book a session. Go to my booking calendar, choose a time that works for you, and you’re in (session can be scheduled for after next week).

But at 11:59 p.m. on Friday, the calendar comes down and open booking will end.

I may offer a single session from time-to-time in the future. But I’m not sure if or when I’ll do it.

So get a slot while they last.

Thanks for reading.

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Tom Ruwitch

Tom Ruwitch is the founder and CEO of Story Power Marketing. For more than 30 years, he has helped businesses grow by delivering powerful stories using a variety of different media.