Don’t overreach with your story. If you expand beyond what you can deliver and people find the lapse, they’ll start scrutinizing everything you do and go back to pick apart everything you’ve said in the past. Credibility is fragile. Make sure you can deliver what you promise.
Stretching the truth is an art form. It's one of the reasons that choosing a product or solution is so difficult. They all "sound" the same. They all say they are the "leading company" for whatever the common name of their product/solution is. Companies don't seem to want to leave out a reference to a feature that they sort'a, kind'a have if it gives them a closer comparison to whoever it is they are competing against. Then they wonder why they can't differentiate their value...
This is why stories are important. They cut through the jargon and the abstract strategic blathering to demonstrate relevance. If they're good.
The problem is that being off, just a tinge, can cause great problems with future belief.
Seth Godin makes a good point in his post about Marketing Time and then again in his post Going Too Far. In the first he talks about keeping time promises, which translates into whom things are done for. Which translates into who’s important. You or them. (Hint - it should be them)
In the latter post he talks about carrying a big juicy grapefruit through airport security and not getting called on it. He’s left wondering, “what all that fuss about four ounces of hair gel is about?” I gotta say, that makes me wonder too. Imagine the stuff that could be in a grapefruit… The upshot is, how seriously should we take what’s said?
On the other hand, a good story enhances an abstract strategy statement. It provides depth, common ground and understanding that strategy statements can’t touch. A good story connects with people at their level, it doesn’t use industry jargon, but utilizes concrete language that keeps the focus on the story’s concepts, not the words. Stories need people to want to relate because what you’re saying is relevant and important to them. Tell stories people want to know and repeat. This is also the key to viral marketing, by the way.