How to sell a potato peeler using the Storybrand framework

Will the StoryBrand framework work for your business? 

As a StoryBrand Guide I commonly get asked by business leaders if StoryBrand will help transform their marketing.

My answer is always a resounding YES!

I then go to show them a variety of brands from different industries that have experienced dramatic results by becoming a StoryBrand business.

Today I want to show you how Joe Ades (1932-2009) made millions of dollars selling a potato peeler, by using the natural principles of effective communication found in the StoryBrand framework.

Who was Joe Ades?

Joe Ades, also known as the “Gentleman Peeler”, is recognized among copywriters and the advertising community, as one of the all-time greatest salesman.

Here’s a video of Joe Ades in NYC, selling his potato peeler.

Watch this video and then see below how I deconstruct Joe's marketing messaging using the StoryBrand framework.


You hold it in the other hand. And you’ve got those lovely carrot sunflowers. And you that for the kids they’ll eat all their vegetables.

They’ll think it’s candy. When you peel a potato it doesn’t matter whether you’re handed, left-handed, like a politician - underhanded. All you take off that potato, or any other fruit and vegetable, is a think layer of skin.

You’ve got not waste. You do it in record time.

Everybody’s got one like this.

They take too long. Grandma gets arthritis.  She can’t hold that. You hit the bar every time. You get a clean slice every time. You let those slices go into the hot oil and watch them go brown.

You’re going to love the potato chips. You can’t buy them in the stores.

They’re made in Switzerland. They’re not made in China. They’re five dollars. They’re worth every penny. They last a lifetime.

StoryBrand Breakdown

Let's look at how Joe invites the audience into a story using a few of the key principles from the StoryBrand Framework.

Customer Wants

Their kids to eat all their vegetables.

The Problem

Peeling vegetables is hard and painful.

The villain

The traditional peeler that everyone uses causes arthritis.

Internal feeling

It’s frustrating spending all that time to peel vegetables.


You shouldn’t have to waste so much time peeling vegetables. You deserve to get it done in record time.

The Plan

  1. It’s easy to use.
  2. You get a clean slice every time.
  3. Your kids are going to love the potato chips every time.

Call to action

You can’t buy them in the stores. You can only get them here for $5.


  • They’re well built; made in Switzerland, not in China.
  • They’re worth every penny.
  • They’ll last a lifetime.
  • Easy to use , even Grandma with her artists can use it.


  • You get the job done fast.
  • You don’t waste your vegetables.
  • Your kids will love to eat all their vegetables.


  • You waste time.
  • You waste vegetables.
  • Your kids will not love eating their vegetables.
  • Grandma gets arthritis if she continues to use the traditional peeler.

The key to Joe Aden's marketing message success

  • Short sentences.
  • Simple words.
  • Fast points.

You also need to know, if you do marketing well, you're naturally executing some of the principles.

But the goal is not just to do a few principles well, but to execute them deliberately for maximum results.

As Donald Miller, teaches us, “When we position our customer as the hero and ourselves as the guide, we will be recognized as a trusted resource to help them overcome their challenges. Positioning the customer as the hero in the story is more than just good manners; it’s also good business.''

Joe invited his audience into a story. He understood the hero in the story he told, the mother who wants their children to eat more vegetables.

More StoryBrand Insights.