- What is a Brand story?
- Brand storytelling: what is it, and why does it matter?
- Why Should Your Brand Tell Stories?
- Types of brand storytelling
- Elements of a brand story
- How to Create a Brand Narrative
Storytelling is now a buzzword in the business world. Until recently, we mostly heard about storytelling when we wanted to talk about the creative or art industries. But with the discovery of the secrets behind most companies' successes, such as Apple, most businesses have found it a useful technique for branding.
So what is storytelling in itself? Read on to find out what storytelling is, the process involved in the art of storytelling in branding, and how you can use it to pass along detailed information to your target audience.
What is a Brand story?
The backstory of an organisation is often called its "brand story." The brand story will include the history, mission, and brand description told in a way to build an emotional connection with clients.
So a brand story is not just the history of a company narrated in chronological order. It is a story narrated with the audience in mind—to build emotion and relatability with the audience.
The main purpose of a brand story is to set the brand apart from its competitors and develop a loyal customer base by appealing to people's emotions and establishing a strong customer relationship.
A brand story serves as a powerful tool for a brand to effectively communicate its identity and evoke a customer's emotion while building a strong brand image and leaving a positive, lasting impression on the target audience.
Brand storytelling: what is it, and why does it matter?
Brand storytelling refers to the process of using narrative components and strategies to communicate a brand's message, values, and purpose to the audience for which the brand is intended.
In a study conducted by journalist Robert Walker with writer John Glenn proved that pairing a story with a product can increase its perceived value by up to 2,706%. Stories drive emotional value and can transform insignificant objects into significant ones.
Storytelling for brands is the art of creating a narrative that speaks to the target audience rather than simply advertising a product or service. The origin, values, and purpose of the company, as well as the thoughts and feelings of actual customers, all figure prominently into this narrative. The end goal for you as a brand is to establish an emotional bond with your customer, inspiring devotion and laying the groundwork for a lasting relationship.
There are a lot of reasons why brand storytelling matters, some of which are:
Using storytelling as a brand helps you effectively engage with your audience on a more personal level and inspire positive reactions like happiness, nostalgia, and empathy, all of which can boost sales and word-of-mouth promotion. Talk about brands like Apple, whose products create a certain feeling for their users.
Storytelling for brands gives you an edge over rivals. A brand that can set itself apart by telling an interesting and compelling story will attract more customers. It's a way to build a reputable brand that stands out.
Storytelling is interesting, engaging, and fascinating by nature. It captures the attention of your audience, maintains their interest, gains their attention, and ignites their imagination. Your brand can engage your audience, increase brand awareness, and maintain customer loyalty by developing captivating brand stories.
Trust and credibility
The relatability of your stories helps you gain consumer trust and sympathy. Consumers are more likely to have faith in a company and its products when they feel like they know the people behind the brand. By telling stories that reflect their core beliefs, brands may gain trust and credibility.
Why Should Your Brand Tell Stories?
Make Your Brand stick.
Stories are more easily retained by the human mind than hard data. Brands that are able to convey engaging stories are more likely to stick in the minds of consumers. This increases brand awareness and leads to mouth-to-mouth brand recommendations. The more people talk about your brand, the more likely you are to get customers.
Build an emotional connection.
Stories may make us feel things, and how we feel is a major factor in our decision-making. Brands can influence consumers purchasing decisions by creating emotional bonds with them through the use of well-told stories. Customers are more inclined to be loyal and to promote a brand they have an emotional connection to.
Simplify complex messages.
Stories are great, especially for brands selling complex or technical products. Storytelling lets brands make these messages easier to understand and show them in a way that people can relate to.
Standing out among competitors
With brand storytelling, your company can set itself apart from the competition by highlighting its distinctive values, mission, and brand personality. A compelling brand story can showcase a company's unique selling points, giving it a memorable name and face in the minds of consumers and giving the business an edge over the competition.
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Types of brand storytelling
Several types of brand storytelling exist. But here is a list of storytelling formats that will help you craft your stories quicker.
This may sound cliche, but your brand story can be shared in different ways. You can develop brand stories like founders stories, purpose stories, stories of your story, brand values stories, stories around your mission and vision, etc.
According to a Harvard Business Review report, humans are wired to respond to good storytelling.
One of the quickest ways to sell your product or service is to tell the story behind the product or service. Your story connects your audience's values and needs to what you offer, making it easier to build loyalty.
Product stories can cover aspects like sourcing, needs, benefits, challenges, or how-tos surrounding your product.
Sharing customer stories proves the validity and trustworthiness of your brand. Your customers want to know how others use your product and what perception they have of your brand.
A customer story can include client reviews and testimonials, a spotlight story, a contest, or a customer advocate story.
Seasons of the year have stories behind them that every brand can find their personal angle on. Your audience would connect to stories surrounding a season when you shared them.
Data-driven brand storytelling is the process through which a company uses analytics and data to produce the stories and messages it shares about its products and services. To do this, you must use data insights to craft stories that appeal to your target audience in a way that aligns with your brand's stated mission and values.
Educational brand storytelling
Educational brand Storytelling is the act of using storytelling methods to share educational information while promoting a brand or organisation. It involves the combination of narrative techniques and educational information in order to engage and inform the target audience in a memorable and easy-to-understand manner.
Community brand storytelling
Community brand storytelling is the process of using storytelling to talk about how a company's product is making a positive impact in a community In order to build a sense of belonging and loyalty. It is important to tell brand stories that are compelling and reflect the community's values, beliefs, and objectives.
Examples of brands that use a storytelling approach
Coca-Cola is known for its compelling brand storytelling. Its ads are often about happiness, togetherness, and sharing. One of its most famous ads, "Share a Coke," put people's names on Coca-Cola bottles to get them to connect and share a Coke with someone they care about.
Apple makes use of storytelling when announcing a product launch. They place a strong emphasis on the feelings that their products inspire in customers as well as the overall user experience. In their advertisements, they frequently emphasise the ways in which their products improve people's lives and demonstrate how technology can be simple, straightforward, and incorporated into daily activities.
Huggies’ No Baby Unhugged Campaign explored the data-driven storytelling format to express their care for the babies who use the products and for the parents too. Using data and stats in their stories evoked the emotion needed to spur their customers to action.
Elements of a brand story
A brand story is the narrative that best captures the company's core beliefs, goals, and values. It aims to establish a strong relationship with the target audience and set the brand apart from its competitors. Here are some key components that can make up a brand's story:
A brand's story begins with the history surrounding the brand's birth. It covers the founders' inspiration for starting the brand and the journey that led to its establishment.
Brand core values
Values are what define a brand's culture and direct how the brand operates. The brand's story should represent these values in order to gain the confidence of consumers and promote the brand's authenticity.
Brand's unique selling point
A brand's story must emphasise the qualities that set it apart from its competitors. Something about the brand’s unique features, a strategy, or an advantage makes it stand out from the competition.
The backstory of a brand should include its target audience by addressing their problems, needs, and wants. It helps the audience relate to the brand on a more personal level and create brand awareness.
To fulfil a brand's objectives and establish a distinct personality in the market, every brand needs a long-term plan that details its distinctive positioning and direction. Determining who the brand is meant for, what it offers, and how it should be expressed are all part of planning a brand strategy.
Call to action
A good brand story will motivate its audience to take the next step. It may push people to engage with the company, believe in its objectives, and purchase the brand's products. A call to action is what motivates people to become converting clients, and it helps influence their buying decisions.
How to Create a Brand Narrative
Building a solid brand identity begins with crafting your brand's narrative. Here are some guidelines to follow while you develop your brand's story:
Identify your target audience.
Identify your target audience and learn as much as you can about your target audience. Find out what they want and need. With this information at hand, you can craft a brand story that truly speaks to your target audience.
Define your brand's mission and values.
Determine the reason for your brand's existence and what it stands for. This would serve as a means of understanding the whole idea behind the brand and assist in having the right information to be used in writing a brand story that suits the brand perfectly.
Create your brand's tone:
Establish a voice and tone that reflect the ideals and principles that consumers associate with your product. Determine if your brand is informal,authoritative, empathic, or innovative. All brand communications should share the same tone of voice that accurately conveys the business's values across all platforms.
Make use of storytelling.
Incorporate narrative tactics into your brand's narrative to capture your audience's interest. Bring your brand story to life by using simple language, detailed images, and likeable characters to connect your target audience to your brand.
Adapt and evolve.
It is important to be flexible in the narrative you tell about your brand as it develops. Always be aware of what's going on in the market and how customers feel. Maintaining brand relevance and emotional connection requires constant analysis and adjustment of the brand story.
Brand storytelling is an effective communication tool because it allows you to portray your brand to the world from a new perspective and allows your target audience to imagine themselves as characters while influencing their decision-making process positively. Although the art of storytelling is an ancient method, when applied properly, it would yield a positive result.