Much is made of the idea that your brand is what people say about you when you are not in the room. However, brands are defined by more than reputation and stories are told and spread by more than just consumers. Some stories you control. Many you can’t.
I first connected with Shawn Callahan on LinkedIn a number of years ago and was immediately drawn to his storytelling style and his theories about what makes business storytelling tick.
Successful brands have a story that connects them with their audience and that forms the backbone of their strategy. But if you’ve been around a while, the story that your loyal customers know is not yet shared by those who are new to the brand. Here are 4 ways to connect your longer story to those who don’t know it as well.
I really like Ed Woodcock’s description of what it takes to build a fascinating brand story. Creativity, resonance and purpose are all key attributes of successful brand storytelling strategy, he observes, in a recent piece on top storytelling brands. It’s fascinating to observe how those characteristics are playing out across the economy.
The case for brands to engage in storytelling is well made and well documented. Stories are so much more effective than facts, they engage us and in so doing, they motivate brands and buyers alike to get involved and to act.
Marketers talk a lot about the increasing personalisation that consumers are looking for in their interactions with brands. At the same time though, we know consumers seek endorsement from others on the good brands to be associated with and those that should be avoided. Interesting dichotomy. If you’re a brand manager, where do you invest your energies – products (as the means of those interactions), experience (as the memory of those interactions) or reputation (as the underwriter of those interactions)?
You can read the full story here.
The aspiration drive that has dominated how marketers think and what they strive to achieve in building a brand’s mythology is increasingly being seen by consumers as unattainable and fake. Buyers are drawing a line under what they perceive to be airbrushed brands. And the push-back is manifest in everything from the acceptance of imperfect food to the increased use of plus-size models on fashion house runways.
Everyone loves a good story, and the critical strength of heritage brands is that they have such stories in abundance. Little wonder then that as American consumer confidence starts to look up, the brands that remind consumers of what they have, where they are and where they’ve come from are doing well. It’s a timely reminder of just how much the story of a brand links to the narrative that buyers run in their own minds of the lives they lead and the lives they would lead if they could.
It’s tempting to see a struggling brand or business as one mass of people, and to believe that underperformance is spread evenly across the organisation. That’s seldom the case.