Brand storytelling is different from advertising. Advertising promotes a particular product or service, but brand storytelling is about giving your brand a personality. Here’s why brand storytelling is important and how it can set you apart from your competitors.
What is brand storytelling?
Storytelling is a human trait as old as our history. Even in the earliest stages of evolution, humans recorded their stories in cave paintings.
Savvy marketers have always known the importance of storytelling.
They used it to connect with their customers on a personal level and make them feel part of a bigger narrative. However, you may have noticed a new term being used lately, brand storytelling.
Now, what does that mean!
Brand storytelling is different from advertising. Advertising promotes a particular product or service, but brand storytelling is about giving your brand a personality.
The idea is to talk about the brand beyond the products and services. Its origin story, its journey, ups and downs, its people, and its values, all these elements are part of the brand’s story.
To tell a great brand story, you need insights, have a vision, and, most importantly, be able to express the brand’s journey with honesty and sincerity.
Why brand storytelling matters
Brand storytelling is a powerful tool to help people understand what your company does and why it’s different from the competition. As a company, you have a short window to turn your product or service into a brand.
Therefore, highlighting how your product or service will solve a problem rather than talking about its features can create a deeper connection with your audience.
Think of any brand that you love. Chances are that they tell a story.
On the other hand, brands that disappear from public memory often use the technical aspects of their products/services as their main selling point.
We remember emotions and forget technical specs. That’s because we humans are very good at remembering stories and very bad at remembering facts.
How to use brand storytelling effectively
Brand storytelling is all about creating an experience for your audience. An experience that goes beyond the consumption of your product or service. Here’s how you can create a narrative that stays with your audience.
Show the world who you are
Brand storytelling shows people who you are and what your product/service can do in a way that they can relate to it. It makes an organization seem more relatable.
Share your inspiration, values, and goals with the customers, give them a reason they should believe in you, and make them a part of your growth story.
Instead of giving them facts and statistics, share something meaningful that defines your purpose. When your customers feel they know and understand you, they will automatically form a lasting connection with your brand.
Create an emotional connect
Remember the phrase ‘business like’?
For a long time, businesses were supposed to be emotionless. You hide your emotions when you do business and that was the desired quality. But we’ve come a long way since those days. Today, organizations are not just economic entities. They are part of the societal and cultural fabric.
Brand storytelling can accomplish what even an expensive marketing campaign fails to achieve. Stories grab attention and evoke an emotional response.
Therefore, find avenues to create an emotional connection with your audience. Speak the language they do, use imagery they can relate to, and be sensitive to their hopes and aspirations.
Empathy-based messaging is about projecting yourself into the reader’s position and responding from that perspective. Empathy-based content is often created to make the audience feel understood or heard.
It is a fundamental approach to human interaction and a powerful way to make people like you and your brand. More importantly, empathy-based messaging achieves this objective without getting preachy or overbearing on emotions.
Share emotional stories that resonate with your audience’s life experience
An emotional story can be about anything that evokes strong feelings in your audience. It doesn’t have to talk about your offerings directly but at the same time, it shouldn’t be completely separated from your offerings.
Provide value and stay relevant
There is no dearth of content today. With the growth of digital marketing, people are constantly bombarded with it. The brands must put up a tough fight even to grab a second of customer’s attention.
How can you navigate this saturated space?
The only way is to create content that sticks around is to be relevant and provide value.
If your story provides value to the customers and is relevant, it will be heard. Make the stories customer-centric and convey your message through them.
It is about time the brands realized they don’t need to spend billions of dollars on massive marketing campaigns to compete in this content-driven brand marketing space. As a brand, your story is your USP. Just be open and honest to your audience, and you will create fans rather than just customers.
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Header photo by Chris Malinao Burgett on Unsplash