Do metaphores add life to a conversation or are they just tacky? 1 of 2

MetaphorIn my conversations I like to add metaphores and analogies to enrich the conversation and by adding this, I add a different perspective to the situation. A while ago I posted the question if metaphores do add life to a conversation in a Linkedin group discussion to learn how other professionals think about the art of storytelling.

Creating rapport

There were quite a lot of responses from all over. Very interesting to learn what metaphores are used, and why. It seems that people use metaphores and analogies either from their own experiences / preferences and/or they are being projected on the conversation partners’preferences. Thus, creating a powerful tool to create rapport.

Some people, those who are visual thinkers, for example, might benefit tremendously from the image that your metaphor creates in their minds.

Are metaphores a way to start up a dialogue, or are to enabling only one-way traffic in a conversation?

Metaphore or analogy

Also, the difference between a metaphore and a analogy was pointed out: Any sentence with as or like in it is an analogy and not a metaphore. ‘I am out of here like a herd of turtles’ is an analogie, where ‘ship of the desert’ to refer to a camel is a metaphore.

The tip of the iceberg is another all time favourite to refer to a situation where there’s more  to it than meets the eye.

About the author

Over the past few years Walter van der Scheer has been evangelizing marketing automation to advertising agencies, e-commerce companies and co-workers alike and has been building a team of determined sales professionals. He has made progress, but the road ahead is still very long. Walter shares his personal experiences and challenges along the road of changing the way that marketing is done, while trying to stick to the strategically chosen path. +


  1. Dean September 10, 2012 Reply

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