I’ve seen first-hand the impact a good story can have on a company’s marketing efforts. ‘Storytelling’ has become one of the most effective ways to build your brand and connect with your customers.
It sounds simple, right? But what exactly do I mean and how on earth is storytelling suitable for corporate marketing?
Storytelling brings results
I recently enjoyed working with a small tech startup that was struggling to build a brand and connect with its target audience. They had a seriously-good product but were having trouble communicating its value to potential customers.
After a few meetings with the company’s founders, I realised that storytelling was the key to unlocking success for them.
They had a fascinating backstory – a group of university friends who had come together with a shared passion and the vision to solve a common problem in their industry. They’d worked tirelessly to overcome huge obstacles, and had makeshift offices in an old chapel but had always had tireless support from their families and friends – their determination and exuberance were contagious!
I suggested that they incorporate storytelling into their marketing strategy and we got to work creating a narrative that would resonate with their target audience.
They created a video that showcased their journey and highlighted the unique features of their product. We also created a series of blog posts and social media content that built on storytelling whilst showcasing their expertise. Then we put together an email marketing campaign that brought everything together.
The results were remarkable!
Their website traffic increased and their social media engagement skyrocketed. People were drawn to their stories and were eager to learn lots more about their products. The founding team were thrilled with the response they received. Not only had all their hard work paid off but their business had finally come to life.
When you tell a story (and it’s written well) you can capture your audience’s attention and bring them along with you.
Top storytelling tips:
- Know your audience: Before you start writing your story, do your research and know who you’re speaking to. This will give you the confidence to tailor your marketing to your ideal customer and make it more relatable.
- Identify your brand’s unique value proposition: What’s the one thing that sets your brand apart from your competitors? Do you offer specific benefits or solutions? Remember to communicate your brand’s ‘uniqueness’ in a way that will make sense to your readers.
- Use the hero’s journey framework: The ‘hero’s journey’ has been used in storytelling for centuries. Your story follows a protagonist (the hero) who embarks on a journey, faces challenges and obstacles and ultimately emerges victorious. Spell out what your hero’s journey can teach your reader.
- Get emotional: We remember the way things make us feel. Tapping into emotions is important in creating a memorable and impactful story.
- Use visuals: They say a picture is worth a thousand words, and images can really help to bring your story to life. Consider using photos, videos or illustrations to enhance your storytelling.
- Keep it authentic: Don’t try to be something you’re not. Your audience isn’t daft and can easily see through something that appears fake and insincere. Instead, focus on what makes your business unique and tell your readers why they should trust you.
Storytelling is a powerful marketing tool. By telling a compelling story, and leaving out the hard sell, you can connect with your ideal audience on a deeper level and build a strong brand identity.
Take time to decide on the stories your brand needs to tell and don’t be afraid to reach out for help.
How to incorporate storytelling into your marketing strategy:
- Website: Your website is often the first point of contact for potential customers, so make sure your brand story is front and centre. Share your story on your homepage, about page and other key areas.
- Social media: All the social media networks offer creative ways to share bite-sized, easily digestible chunks of storytelling through photos, videos, stories and reels.
- Blogging: Blog posts are a fantastic way to build on your story and share long-form content about your values, ideas and developments.
- Email marketing: Use your story in your email marketing campaigns. Attract new subscribers with a tantalising introduction to your story.