So, you think your business can survive without brand storytelling?
Demystifying the idea narratives are not absolutely necessary for brand awareness & growth.
Businesses that want to stand out amidst short attention spans and oversaturated markets need to prioritize brand storytelling. This tactic is essential for modern marketers because it extends beyond the advertising basics of product and service information to connect audiences to an emotively engaging narrative. It’s no longer a nice to have, but an absolute necessity, especially for everyone’s new favour client the Millennial.
In this blog, we’re going to give you some unsolicited advice about brand storytelling. We will run the gamut from what exactly this new buzzword is all about through to a brief look at how you can make use of it within your marketing artillery.
If you see the value in what we’re blabbing about but remain a bit baffled by how best to brand your business, give us a shout. We won’t bite (though or branding bark is not to be taken lightly).
Let’s start with the basics: What is brand storytelling?
Well, first off, it’s anything but basic (sorry, we had to).
When you began building your brand, you hopefully did so by piecing together a bunch of awesome parts you felt confident would distinguish you from everything else currently out there. You created your product/service model based on a need that had yet to be filled and continue to deliver on that distinct model each time you step into your real or virtual office.
Brand storytelling takes the reasons you became a business and gives them a heartbeat. Instead of focusing on how soft your fabrics are, you craft a story about where they come from, how they support sustainability, community-building and the betterment of your customer’s overall lifestyle. Brand storytelling says, “This is not only what we do, it defines who we are and why you should care.”
Speaking of the “why,” why is brand storytelling so important?
Let’s start with the timeless reasoning about why brand narratives matter, and then we will look at why it’s become a can’t-miss trend in the 2020s. Marketing’s highest aim is to get people to convert. This most often looks like purchases, but could be other steps along the road to conversion, including social media engagement or signing up for newsletters, etc.
Despite people’s fascination with product facts, psychology shows people’s biggest motivation for buying is emotion and, we hate to break it to you, but an overly salesy approach to…well, sales is not the way to inspire motivational emotions. If you can make your audiences laugh, cry and care about what you’re saying, the battle is basically won, and that is what effective brand storytelling achieves.
The distinguishing force of a strong brand story is key to excelling within our modern marketplace
In the “good old days,” your customers’ range of commercial choice was as far as they were willing to drive. But, now that services have been digitized and shipping rates are basically nilch, your potential customers can choose to purchase from every Tom, Dick, Harry and (insert approximately 6 billion other names here).
Gone are the days when your brand was solely keeping up with the Joneses. Now, via the Internet and social media, you quite literally have to keep up with the Kardashians to gain and keep your audiences’ attention. Your brand story – inclusive of your roots, values, vision and “why’ – is the best way to do this.
From why to how, creating & sustaining a successful brand story takes TLC: time, love & (effective) communication
We are not going to delve too intensely into the how-tos of brand storytelling just yet. Despite our quick wittedness and fab content, you’re probably ready for us to wrap this up so you can take a good long look at whether you have a brand narrative or just a bunch of slogans strung together in bold font.
So, a quick rundown of where to start and where to, hopefully, end up is as follows:
- Get a digital vision board or just a piece of paper (whatever floats your brand) and start writing down your mission, vision, values and distinguishing features
- Determine why you went into business and what you want people to know about that journey
- If you’re really struggling to define your purpose (maybe you just frigging love fedoras so one day you decided to make hats), do some research into brands you admire and get a feel for their story
- Once your narrative has some umph, think about how best to share it using visuals, copy and various media that reflect your who, how and why
- Don’t stray from your brand story and share this intimate perspective with people who you think will really get it (aka your soon-to-be brand evangelists)
Want to turn your brand story from a tragic tale into a successful epic?
We’ve already said a lot above and, honestly, this just scratches the surface of strategic brand storytelling, so if you’re intimidated by the prospect of telling a bad, boring or inauthentic story, we get it. Contact CR Creative and we can guide you from conception through to strategic content creation to put your brand on the map and help keep it there, come hell or pandemic.