How to Brand Your Business with the Art of Storytelling
Many self-publishing authors embark on the journey to market and brand their ebooks, while leaving their talents as an author behind, and attempting to take on the persona of a marketing agent. Oddly one of the keys to success in branding is exactly what authors, even of non-fiction, excel at the most—storytelling.
Since ancient times, human beings have always been fascinated by good stories. Why this interest? Well, because when well done, it sparkles our curiosity and awakens our emotions. This art can be integrated into all forms of content in your new ‘company’ to captivate your audience: websites, blogs, social media… And if the story of your brand is appealing enough, customers will be more interested in your brand and what you’re selling. If you want to know how to brand your business with the art of storytelling, keep reading.
The Basic Elements for Telling a Good Story
Branding with storytelling requires that you captivate and engage your buyers with the same basic elements of any good story:
- The context has to be established right off the bat.
- A scene where the story is taking place.
- Characters, here the use of conversations is recommended.
- An event that entices the curiosity of readers.
- Conflict or challenges that were overcome
With these elements, a story is more engaging and makes more sense. Note that the audience also needs to know why you are telling them your story. So establish that point from the start. Although avoid giving too many details. Sometimes, telling a story in chronological order can make the audience lose interest. Especially if it takes too long before the exciting things happen. Use these basic storytelling tips to grab your customers’ attention and keep them hanging on for more.
Get Your Readers Emotionally Involved
Feeling emotions make us feel more alive and in a story it helps readers to connect with the characters or the storyteller if the story revolves around him. So before crafting your story, think about the emotion you want to communicate and give information to support it. For instance, describe briefly what the scene looked like, what you could smell in the air, etc. The goal is to make the audience engaged by appealing their senses with something they may have experienced.
However, as said avoid drowning them with too much information. Give them what matters!
Talking as well about an event related to your business and something that you learned will make your story easier to recall. Moreover if it is easy to relate to your story, people will be more likely to talk about it and share it with others. In fact, people like to be part of stories. So giving them the opportunity to be part of your brand’s growth is an opportunity not to be missed. Come up with ways to get your audience involved in your brand.
Take for example the case of Nike’s emotional branding, it is so powerful that it inspires strong customer loyalty all over the world. It is usually centered around the story of the hero, of humble origins, who emerges triumphant after overcoming immense challenges.
This same pattern can very well be applied to, say, a home security system against a house fire, or an antacid against heartburn or even a series of novels.
Business Storytelling: Rely on Authenticity
It is true that not all businesses have a story full of tragedies or twists and turns. If it that is the case for you, do not try to create a shattering one. Indeed, when faced with stories that are too extravagant, people tend to believe that we are trying to fool them. And they do not appreciate that. It can even have a negative effect on your brand. So focus on authentic stories and transparency. It will make your audience see the human aspect of your brand. Furthermore it will set a difference between you and your competitors.
Let’s take the case of McDonald’s who invented back in 2014 a 3D printer that was supposed to create Happy Meal Toys in real time, this didn’t see the light of day and was used in McDonald’s business storytelling.
Also keep in mind that no one likes listening to people bragging over their accomplishments. Of course, they are part of your brand. But in storytelling, it is better to talk about the challenges you have encountered. Do not be afraid to talk about your failures. Why? Because brands are made up by human beings and human beings make mistakes from time to time. Telling more about your failures will create an emotional connection with your audience. They want to know why and how did you get to the place you are in today. Be an open book, explain to them how you get things done.
Deliver a Clear Message
To create your business, you have gone through more or less laborious hardships. Storytelling is the opportunity to share your experience and what you have learned. By hearing or reading it, your audience will learn something from it too. Thus, your narrative must be stimulating, inspiring and compels people to connect with your brand. Moreover, the message of your story conveys your values and builds strength.
You should know that a disorganized brand narrative leaves people more confused than anything else. Consistency is key here! Thus, make sure that your brand’s story, logo, colors, slogan for digital and print marketing materials are presented in the same way across all communication channels. Note that knowing your brand story in and out will help you to tell it naturally to customers.
Knowing how to deliver a good brand story can greatly help small businesses attract more customers in. As a matter of fact, it can turn readers into customers. Brand narrative is as well an opportunity to tell your audience who you are, what you do and that you understand their needs. So get out there and tell your story.