What does your brand storytelling say about your business?
Do you ever wonder what makes one business excel over another similar company? Why did VHS win the video war rather than Betamax, even though Betamax was supposedly a better technology? How did Apple grow to be the tech giant it is now, hands-down beating Microsoft, the market leader at the time?
Let me let you into a secret; it’s not necessarily the better product that wins.
What makes or breaks your sales and growth is your marketing message. Put simply, VHS had a better sales pitch than Betamax, meaning that more VHS video players were bought, which ultimately led to the demise of Betamax. Of course, that is all irrelevant now as who still uses video players? But the concept is still relevant.
You need to make customers WANT to buy your products or service. Fill them with the desire for your product, and then it will sell itself.
Does your marketing suck?
If you are already making sales, does that mean your marketing isn’t effective? Not necessarily. But the big question is:
How many sales are you missing out on because customers can’t figure out what you do within the first 5 seconds of visiting your website?
The biggest mistake I see on websites is too much information. This results in the customer not understanding what you offer or how you can help them. And worse still, if they decide they want what you offer, but they can’t find a way to do business with you.
Once they are confused or can’t find what they need on a website, they are off to another website that does get their message across better.
At The Web Pixie, we help guide you through creating a clear brand message so that this can be used effectively across your website to help your business grow.
This doesn’t mean to say that you should provide no product information. You still need to be conscious of having enough content to make sure your SEO is good. Just make sure it does not distract from your overall message. If the customer wants to find more information, use a ‘More info’ button.
What makes good brand storytelling?
As a small business owner, you may not have the resources (money, time or skills) to create an expensive marketing campaign. But modern marketing has changed.
Today’s consumer has access to a mountain of information. They don’t want more unnecessary information; they want a simple, clear message that tells them what your product or service will do for them.
A clear message does not mean waxing lyrical about the benefits or features of your product/service. Instead, we are talking about the customer’s transformation by using your product/service; what will they gain, how will they feel?.
This might seem overwhelming and complicated, but it is as simple as telling a story.
Your brand story.
This story part doesn’t mean telling the history of your business. Unfortunately, customers don’t care about that too much.
Your brand storytelling is the story you use to entice your customer.
If the customer can relate to your story/message and think you are talking about them, you have created intrigue to make them stick with you to find out more. Hopefully, the end result will be a sale.
What is your brand story?
Telling stories has been around since the dawn of time. If you want to get your message across, it has been common practice to build it into a story. How many old wives tales, fairy stories, etc., do we still use that get’s the message across.
Stories put the customer into the heart of the story by making them the hero. It allows them to become involved and buy into gaining success or avoiding the problem that the story’s hero is experiencing.
The story has the power to hold their attention. It also has the benefit of being easy to remember, meaning your business stays in the customer’s memory longer.
Donald Miller has built a business that lays out the StoryBrand framework in his book, Building a StoryBrand. This is one of the best books I have read on marketing, and I encourage you to read it.
It defines a framework that helps you to clarify your marketing message and is easily repeatable for a small business.
The main selling point is that it positions the customer as the hero in your brand’s story. Your business is set as the guide or expert to help the hero navigate the fears preventing them from being successful and getting what they want.
Your brand storytelling will draw your customer into your brand. Having a clear brand story means you avoid confusing your customer with what you do.
How do I create my business brand story?
A brand story, or a BrandScript in the StoryBrand framework, aims to help businesses create a customer-centric marketing strategy.
The BrandScript will give your company a clear direction for your marketing messages. This includes the content for your website, emails or any other marketing you use.
Here is a summary of the format of your BrandScript, used to create your brand story:
A CHARACTER who wants something encounters a PROBLEM before they can get it. At the peak of their despair, a GUIDE steps into their lives and gives them a PLAN and CALLS THEM TO ACTION. That action helps them avoid FAILURE and ends in a SUCCESS.
This is the basis of all stories. Compare it to all your favourite movies and see.
The character is your customer, and your business is the guide. The rest is the details show you empathise with them and your offer can help them get what they want.
It’s as simple as that!
You can use different elements of your brand story in various ways to entice, inform, inspire and transform your customer.
What is a good brand storytelling?
One of the best examples of clear brand storytelling that I have noticed in recent years is Trinny London. Although this is a relatively new make-up company, I know we need another make-up company don’t we?!, that seems to be going from strength to strength.
Their mantra is ‘Rethink your routine’, but their hero is a woman of a certain age who has got stuck in a rut with their make-up and have lost confidence in being able to change it up. Their mantra is mentioned consistently throughout their website, but their brand story resonates throughout their social media platforms, no matter what topic they cover. I can even recognise when something is Trinny London yellow; that’s how open they are about promoting everything about their brand.
The interesting thing I see with this brand is that I am a woman of that certain age, but I have no idea how Trinny came into my consciousness. I certainly wasn’t looking for any new make-up. But as soon as I stumbled across it, I was hooked. And it’s not just me. Independently, many of my friends have had the same experience. We all started promoting the products to each other without realising it.
This is what you should aim to create in your brand storytelling—gaining raving fans as customers that do the hard work for you by spreading the word about your business with no prompting from you.
So what is your compelling message to your customers? Can you say it easily? Is it simple, relevant and repeatable? Can your entire company repeat your message to anyone who asks?