At the heart of effective brand building will always be engaging storytelling. Consumers will struggle to build affinity with a product or company, but a great story can help solidify certain qualities that the brand represents.
Whether it is a commercial, a social media campaign, or a print advertisement, there are ways to use storytelling to convey a strong identity.
Assuming you already have a business and product to offer, the following storytelling tips can be used to develop your brand.
Think About Your Hook
A good story will contain a hook that draws people into the narrative. Across all types of media, people are attracted to stories of underdogs and triumphs over adversity.
Another common story is of a journey or quest to achieve a major goal.
Alternatively, adding some humor can work, with a strange situation or a happy accident that helped in the building of your business.
Study Different Sources
There are really only a limited number of broad narratives you can use, but they can be shaped with their own characteristics.
Studying a variety of sources, including similar brands, television shows, movies, and novels, will uncover a host of ideas you can adapt.
Your story should be personal and unique, but don’t be afraid to draw inspiration from established sources.
Personality is integral to brand development, with customers reluctant to trust a faceless organization.
A brand does not have to be built around an individual person, but an ethos, identity, or outlook can give something to believe in.
In many cases, though, the company founder may have an interesting story that can be developed. Many established brands are associated with founders who are no longer involved in the company, but the story still resonates with audiences.
Target Different Media
There are numerous outlets for promoting your brand, so look to tailor the message for the specific platform.
Videos can tell a longer story, making use of narrative, visuals, and slogans. Social media and print ads have less space to tell a story, but you can still achieve a lot in an image.
Various aspects, including color, font, logo, and design, all convey something to the viewer, so look to develop styles and threads that can run through all your promotional work.
Look for Authenticity
Inventing a compelling story might sound like an option, but this will lead to problems.
A false story will eventually be found out as your brand grows, but most audiences can sense a problem before this happens.
Look for authenticity in your storytelling, avoiding a disconnect between the company and the message. Of course, your story will need to be crafted for it to become memorable, but at its core it should be authentic.
Avoid Overt Marketing
There are occasions, such as a promotion on a shopping channel, where heavily promoting products will work. However, where you are attempting to build your brand over the long term, avoiding overt marketing will prove more successful.
Focusing on the story of your brand, the emotions associated with a purchase, and the benefits of your products will help to make sales, but will stay with your audience far longer.
A good story is hard to forget. Over time, whenever a person hears your brand being mentioned they will recall the emotions expressed through your advertising.
Memorable branding can deeply embed an idea about your business, whether that is a feeling of luxury, inclusiveness, quirkiness, or any other powerful emotion.
Using these techniques, creating a compelling story is easily achievable. This story can be developed to build your brand across a variety of platforms. Many purchases are made for emotional reasons, so the ability to tap into these emotions can help you create a sustainable business that lives in the memory.
Photo Credit: Paul Townsend