Brand storytelling is an integral part of your ecosystem, and shaping your narrative, far from being insignificant, could be the very thing that plants you in the minds of your audience. Let’s explore this terrain together.
The heart of brand storytelling
Your brand story is more than just copy. Consider it a vibrant palette that colours everything from your website content and social media narratives to your business interactions and even traditional advertising.
In business, brand storytelling serves a concrete purpose—to inspire, to enhance an experience, and to connect. It’s not merely fluff; it’s function. Like the deep roots that anchor a tree firmly in the ground, a well-crafted message provides stability and nourishment to your brand, making tending to it well worth your time.
A story rooted in authenticity
Stories must be sincere and adapt as cultures shift, businesses change, and audiences grow. Consider your brand story a living entity that develops with you, something that’s always present and ever-changing, therefore needing to be refined or even slightly reworked from time-to-time.
Just as the cycles of the seasons consistently turn, maintaining a steady narrative and consistent message across all platforms bolsters credibility and reliability. By intertwining your vision, values and voice, you can build an unshakable identity, instilling quiet confidence among your community.
The makings of a tale, well-told
- Highlight value: Show how your product or service makes a positive difference
- Ignite emotion: Connect on an emotive level and allow your story to resonate deeply
- Show understanding: Speak directly and with empathy to the people you want to reach
There’s a school of thought that the business isn’t the hero. The customer is. And while your purpose is to help your clients or customers and make their lives better or easier in some way, I also believe you have your own stories to tell – with you at the heart of them – for your audience to enjoy. Investigate the emotional needs of your community and appeal to them by sharing narratives of positive change, the reality of running a business, and real struggles and triumphs.
A meaningful story, your way
Nature needs no adornment. And writing a compelling brand story is no different. Make it engaging, but don’t overcomplicate things—realism and simplicity are the foundations upon which your brand story is built. This is why clarifying your vision, values, and unique voice is vital when forming your story, something we dive into in my free three-week email challenge, Shape Your Brand Story.
When I founded These Are The Days, brand storytelling was at the heart of it. The studio’s name, borrowed from a Van Morrison song, captures something powerful in its opening lines:
These are the days of the endless summer
These are the days, the time is now
There is no past, there’s only future
There’s only here, there’s only now
– Van Morrison
A reminder to ground myself in the present and let go of what has been and could be. My brand name permeates all aspects of my creative work and weaves its way into the tapestry of my content, almost serving as an invitation for prospective clients. They won’t find a hard sales pitch but a softer, more meaningful message.
Brand storytelling isn’t just a marketing tactic; it’s an ongoing process of cultivation—a vital step in bonding with your audience.
The origin story & other examples
It pays to have a memorable tagline accompanied by messages you can occasionally share within your content. This is all part of building up your brand story in the minds of others and, over time, offering a tangible image of who you are and what you do.
Of course, it’s one thing saying this and one thing implementing it, and I appreciate that it’s not always easy to know where to start when it comes to brand storytelling in general. The above information can help us understand the principles and benefits, but it doesn’t get you rolling.
So here are five examples of brand storytelling that you can adopt today.
- THE ORIGIN STORY: Tell the tale of how your brand came to be. Share the battles and breakthroughs you have faced, and don’t shy away from sharing your vision for your business and the values that motivated you to begin.
- A TOUGH CALL: Recount an instance where you had to make a tough choice—perhaps between profit and ethics or short-term success and long-term vision. This can shed light on your beliefs and what truly sets you apart.
- YOUR IDEAL CLIENT: Focus on a customer who benefits from your brand. Walk your followers through a challenge and how they use your product or service. This approach can be potent because it puts the reader in their shoes.
- A DAY IN THE LIFE: Provide an immersive look at a typical day in your business, focusing on what you do, how you do and that all-important ‘why’. This humanises your brand and offers a glimpse into your everyday experience.
- THE LANDMARK MOMENTS: Celebrate significant milestones—anniversaries, collaborations and innovations. This creates a narrative of change and growth and an opportunity to thank your community for their support.
These angles can deepen relationships because each provides a unique lens through which people can understand and appreciate what you offer. Brand storytelling isn’t just a marketing tactic; it’s an ongoing process of cultivation—a vital step in bonding with your audience. Think of your business as the soil and your brand story as the sun which beams on your brand.
For more examples, you might like to sign up for my Inside Story letter, where I share seasonal hints and tips to support my community with strategy, styling and storytelling.