Entertainment mogul Peter Guber has written a new book, Tell to Win. This is not a celebrity tell-all, nor a personal memoir of "my forty years as a mover and shaker in Hollywood" from this former studio chief of Columbia Pictures and Sony, and producer of Rain Man and Batman, among other positions he has held in major entertainment companies.Rather, it is a business book about the pathway to success and has won wide praise, from such divergent voices as Arianna Huffington and Forbes. As of the time I am writing this, it is the #1 book on the Amazon best seller list, quite an unusual feat for a business book.There are two primary themes that Guber believes underlie business success, both of which are important and timely reminders for those of us who believe strongly in word of mouth marketing:1. The power of great storytelling2. The power of face-to-face communications"It's the story, stupid," says Guber. It's not surprising that a movie producer would have a soft spot in his heart for storytelling. But Guber's argument is that storytelling shouldn't be limited to entertainment, but for business success as well. "For too long the business world has ignored or belittled the power of oral narrative. . . . But as the noise level of modern life has become a cacophony, the ability to tell a purposeful story that can truly be heard is increasingly in demand." Guber says that his biggest competitive advantage in business has been his ability to persuade customers, employees, shareholders, the media, and partners through successful and compelling storytelling. He considers storytelling to be "the missing link in business."Not only is Guber a fan of stories, he's also a fan of in-person storytelling. Beyond expressing this as a core belief, with support from heads of business, the arts and entertainment, and politics, Guber cites academic research that shows our brain's mirror neurons , which allow us to process emotions, intentions and actions, fire up far more effectively via face-to-face communication than communication through other channels. And, the brain processes meaning more effectively and is more meaningful when it happens face-to-face. In other words, there is a science behind Guber's advocacy for face-to-face, in-person storytelling. Arianna Huffington, the queen of online blogging, agrees, telling Guber's class at UCLA: "The more time we spend in front of screens, the more time we crave human contact. I believe that intimate in-person interactions where we tell stories to realize our ambitions, goals, and dreams will only intensify as technology expands."This observation applies to marketers who wish to tap the power of consumer conversation. As those of you who read our blog regularly will know, our word of mouth research at Keller Fay strongly supports this notion. Despite the rapid growth in social media, there is far, far more word of mouth about products, services, and brands that takes place offline. And, offline recommendations have greater credibility and lead to greater intent to purchase.To tap the power of word of mouth, it's a mistake to focus on medium over message. Too many brands these days start with the technology: "we need a Facebook strategy or we need a Twitter strategy." No, brands need a consumer-focused story to begin &#8211; something to talk about, and a reason to share or make a recommendation. The first question to ask is, "What's my story?" The second question that needs to be answered is, "Who should tell the story" &#8211; who are your brand advocates and influencers? Only after these two questions have been answered adequately should a brand address the question of what channels are best for helping your story to be told &#8211; maybe that will lead the marketer to social media, but oftentimes it will be another marketing channel &#8211; television, print, outdoor, internet portals, the brand's own website, or potentially any other marketing medium, whether earned, owned, or paid.As Guber says, "Don't rely solely on state-of-the-art technologies to connect. It's the state-of-the-heart technology that's the game charger when you tell your story in the room, face-to-face."Ed Keller, CEO of the Keller Fay Group, has been called "one of the most recognized names in word of mouth." The publication of Keller's book, The Influentials, has been called the "seminal moment in the development of word of mouth." Ed can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.Read all Ed&#8217;s MediaBizBloggers commentaries at WOM Matters.Check us out on Facebook at MediaBizBloggers.comFollow our Twitter updates @MediaBizBloggerMediaBizBloggers is an open-thought leadership blog platform for media, marketing and advertising professionals, companies and organizations. To contribute, contact Jack@mediadvisorygroup.com. The opinions expressed in MediaBizBloggers.com are not those of Media Advisory Group, its employees or other MediaBizBloggers.com contributors. Media Advisory Group accepts no responsibility for the views of MediaBizBloggers authors.