What is a brand story?
A brand story is a unified narrative that encapsulates the facts and feelings that your business generates. Brand storytelling must elicit an emotional response, unlike traditional advertising, which focuses on showing and informing about your brand.
Many individuals believe this is their brand’s origin story or something you have discussed in a brand story marketing meeting. They aren’t entirely incorrect; this can be an important component of your brand’s narrative. However, your brand story should be far bigger.
Your product, price, history, quality, marketing, in-store experience, purpose, values, location, and – most importantly – what other people say about you, are all factors that might influence your brand story.
Consider a tiny town with a couple of individually owned shops. How are these small retail companies supposed to face the likes of Amazon? Through their brand story. Unlike faceless multinational corporations, you can develop emotional engagement by establishing a link of proximity with consumers.
The Value of Your Brand Story
The value of your brand story is of vital importance to your brand strategy. It is what will ultimately increase your company’s visibility, profit, and impact. Treat it like a compass for your marketing plan, and you will end up with a brand that is both profitable and appealing.
The following are three reasons why brand storytelling is the future of marketing:
It is a competitive market out there: tens of millions of pieces of content are being created every day, with much more being shared. Businesses around the world are paying billions of dollars to compete for seconds of attention from audiences who are overwhelmed with similar messaging. The Internet has democratized marketing by making it more accessible, but it has also made it extremely difficult for firms to stand out in the crowd.
It is not enough to have a good product or service, you also need to know how to market it in a way that sets you apart from the competition. It is the reason why interesting brand stories are so crucial. Rather than bombarding your consumers with information, statistics, and testimonials, focus on making your brand meaningful, memorable, and genuine.
Wrap your message in a narrative that transports individuals, simplifies information, and elicits an emotional reaction. Use narrative to tell your brand’s story, including its origins, problems, accomplishments, and value propositions. No one can copy your brand!
Build a Community
Consider what your audience genuinely demands from you while designing your messaging. To succeed, a brand must become much more than just a product or service, which is where storytelling can foster a community. Start dialogues, ask for feedback, and include your audience in what you do as a business using your story to generate a strong emotional connection.
Marketing is no longer the primary competitive distinction in today’s world. Consumers are increasingly asking that businesses demonstrate how their efforts are having a positive influence, supporting a cause, and producing benefits that go beyond profit. Through storytelling, you can curate your brand personality to be engaged in contemporary issues!
What is a brand storytelling example?
There are so many interesting brand stories out there, and those that serve their purpose connect with their audience, and generate a unique aura around a product or service. The Apple Macintosh 1984 Super Bowl ad is a great example of a brand story.
The ad, which was based on George Orwell’s dystopian novel, cost $650,000 to produce and featured throngs of men mindlessly obeying a dictator’s instructions on the screen. The advertisement concludes with a message, “On January 24th, Apple Computer will introduce Macintosh and you will see why 1984 won’t be like 1984.”
This advert by Apple managed to make a political remark as well as a dig at competitors. “We’re revolutionary,” it says, rather than “we’re different.” As a result, this advertisement became one of the most memorable Super Bowl commercials in history. This story screams taking risks, thinking differently, and being bold. A message Apple has continued to reiterate in the last 30 years. ‘Think Different’ was Apple’s 1997 slogan, but as you can see, there is a continuity in the main themes being employed.
The Key to a Great Brand Story
The key to a great brand story is to tell a compelling brand story. The elements to consider when framing your brand include:
- Don’t be general
- Create a long story arc
- Be consistent
Don’t Be General
It is always preferable to demonstrate rather than tell. Focus on how your brand was built to assist a specific type of person rather than claiming general traits. You want your audience to be able to relate to this person. People will tune out if you just say a bunch of generic phrases about how awesome your brand is since they hear these pitches all the time.
It is the difference between mass marketing, which tries to appeal to everyone while affecting no one, and selecting an approach that will genuinely persuade a portion of the audience.
Create a Long Story Arc
Remember that you are building a story that should cultivate a relationship with your audience, to make them return over and over again. Therefore, the themes associated with your brand story must be versatile to stand the test of time. Versatile because as the years pass you don’t want your brand story to be static and out of fashion. Thinking about the long-term ramification and how the story may evolve is imperative.
Make every effort to ensure that your brand is consistent with your values. People are exposed to a lot of advertising so they are usually rather competent at recognizing a fake brand. If the customer believes you have betrayed their confidence, the relationship you are attempting to develop will lack credibility.
So, keep your word when you make a promise. If your brand espouses a value, make sure you don’t contradict that value. Otherwise you will lose customers, and you won’t generate the kind of attention you desire.
Expert tips to tell a compelling brand story
Here are expert tips to tell a compelling brand story:
- Know your audience
- Don’t jump on the bandwagon
- Innovate with NFC technology
Know your audience
It is critical to hold people’s attention long enough for them to become invested in your story. Knowing your audience is a key part of capturing their attention. Which demographic are you aiming for? What drives them? What do they enjoy and what do they despise? Your characters and plot arc should be based on topics that will pique your audience’s interest.
Another technique to express people’s interest is through your words. People will scroll right by if you use the wrong tone. Spend some time working out how to communicate with your target audience in the most effective way possible.
Don’t Jump on the Bandwagon
According to research, 75% of consumers throughout the world want companies to contribute to their happiness and quality of life, with 71% of millennials preferring brands that promote social and environmental change (source).
A word of caution, however: consumers are smart and dislike being taken advantage of. Many businesses have made the mistake of hopping on the bandwagon simply because of a topic’s popularity. Consider McDonald’s infamous International Women’s Day blunder. Take care when it comes to movements and identity politics that you don’t have the legitimacy to co-opt.
Rather than trying to encapsulate your brand in a single story, campaign, product, or service, you should focus on a single fundamental business proposition. Consider it the one thing you want people to remember about your company. This fundamental business proposition – your central brand value – is the tip of the iceberg. It is the one constant that will never change, no matter what happens beneath the shifting waves.
Take, for example, Google. Even though they turned into a global business that now develops smartphones and home assistants, they started with a basic ‘search’ function. Their original core principle of ‘access to information’ still rings true today. The bottom line is that your core message is the lifeblood of your company, and it must be constant across all of your platforms if you want to offer a trustworthy brand experience.
Get to know your customers
You have to tell your brand story in a compelling way that reaches and resonates with your target audience. To do this, it’s essential for you to get to know your customers and target the message specifically to them.
The inBe platform captures the voice of the consumer in a highly secure environment with real-time access to customer insights. As soon as responses are published by customers, they are summarized in customized reports.