September 10, 2021
How to Tell a Brand Story
In the current market, the story that your brand chooses to tell and the impact it has on your audience is more important than ever. It is no longer enough just to sell a product or service.
Consumers want to know what your company stands for, what it believes in, and why it exists. They are invested in your products and your company.
To tap into this emotional pull, you ought to create an engaging digital brand story that can resonate with your target audience.
Let’s take a look at how you can do that. But first…
What is a digital brand story?
A digital brand story can be defined as an authentic, compelling story that combines traditional storytelling with the capabilities of new media. It’s a company’s narrative that can be used to convey its history, mission, vision, or values to its employees, customers, partners, and stakeholders.
Digital brand stories should be used to build a strong relationship with your customers and add meaning to their overall user experience.
It’s how you tell your customer who you are, what you do, and why you do it.
Important elements your digital brand story needs
A brand element can be anything that allows your audience to interact with your company in a more meaningful way, including but not limited to:
- Logo or other graphical items
- Photography or illustration
- Advertising headline
- Company positioning statement
Think of each of your brand elements as a punch line. If it doesn’t land, it won’t stir the desired response and you will have to keep changing it until you get it right.
Similarly, this can be said of your brand story. If it just isn’t feeling quite right, you’ll need to find out what’s missing and strive to make improvements.
Here are three of the most common elements that often need improving in and brand story:
Tone of voice
Your brand’s tone of voice should resonate with your target market. It’s the one thing that separates you from the pack and helps you connect with potential customers.
Finding the correct tone of voice may require assistance from a professional copywriter, but answering questions such as these will help set you on the right path:
- What sector are you working in? Subject Matter will play a big part in the language you use to talk to your customers.
- Are you closer to the corporate end of the spectrum or more fun?
- Are you an established brand looking to solidify your position or a startup brand looking to disrupt the market?
- Who is the target market? Gen Z, Millenials, Baby boomers?
- If you sell a product, is that product cheap & cheerful or high-end and expensive?
- Who are your competitors and how do they project themselves? What works for them and what doesn’t? Are you looking to align yourselves with your competitors or completely differentiate?
The answer to these questions may not be easy to define in some instances, but they will help you create a good brief for a copywriter or brand strategist.
When you have found your brand voice, your content will reach a wider audience, inspire more people, and create more opportunities for your brand to grow.
Whilst developing your tone of voice, you will likely find yourself discussing your brand values.
What does your brand stand for? What is your company culture? Which processes are in place to make sure your company is a part of the solution and not a part of the problem?
In a world that is increasingly aware of social, economical, and environmental change, it’s essential that you make it clear that your brand supports a better future.
Your customers are looking for authenticity in this area, so it’s important that you walk the walk and not just talk the talk. The last thing you want for your brand is to be caught up in a media storm over failed values.
An extension to your brand values would be your brands’ history. What was the genesis of the brand? Who runs the company and what are their backgrounds?
A good history gives context to the brand and puts in place a strong foundation to work on.
Customers like to know who the people are behind the brand, why they decided to create the company and that as individuals they really believe in what they say and what they sell.
Incorporating a little bit of history into your brand story will help people relate to your brand in a much deeper way.
The best methods to tell your brand story
A brand story is a critical part of your brand identity. It speaks directly to your audience by sharing important information about you, your products, and your mission. But for it to perform effectively, you need to pick your channels wisely.
Here are five mediums that are worth your time:
Thanks largely to social media, video has become an integral part of how people consume content online.
Embedding video on your website or utilising social media platforms such as Instagram and Facebook are excellent ways to connect with your customers and engage new audiences.
Stats show that video has the ability to influence 84% of viewers to make a purchase. This is partly due to the fact that people react to visuals faster than any other content format.
Be it a ‘talking head’ style video from one of your team, a customer testimonial, or an animated story, video content is a great way to communicate with your target audience.
If you would like help creating video content for your site, including new technologies such as drone footage, feel free to get in touch.
Blogging allows your team to delve deeper into all aspects of your brand and share their insights with the world.
A well-rounded and informative set of posts can be an excellent way for you to grab the attention of potential customers. Getting them interested in what you do and how your brand can benefit them.
There are many ways in which a blog can be used to help enrich your brand, such as:
- Introducing your employees
- Highlighting new products with in-depth reviews and explainer videos
- Profiling strategic and community partnerships
- Celebrate valued customers
- Commenting on newsworthy topics that relate to your brand
Posts should be shared through social media and a company newsletter, which is still proven to be one of the top ways to engage customers.
Blogging is also a great way to target more keywords as a part of your digital marketing strategy.
Social proof is an indirect way of measuring the value of an idea or product. You put your product or service out there and let your followers do the work for you.
The power of social proof can be contagious because it comes from the simple idea that if everyone else is doing it, then it must be right.
However, leveraging social proof can be a tricky process, with savvy social media users being able to tell the difference between authentic social reviews and paid-for influencers. But if you get it right the benefits can be huge.
Using the correct tone of voice and aligning your efforts with your brand values should enable you to reach the right influencers. These individuals have a direct link to your target market and can help grow your reach exponentially.
Tips to get you started
Your brand story is not just about you and your products. It’s about your customers, business partners, and community connections.
These people are often the best place to start when creating your brand story.
Get insights from your employees
Creating a good story for your brand starts with the team. They are your brand representatives who talk to your customers on a daily basis.
Listening to your team will help you understand your company and brand from an employees’ perspective. How they feel in the workplace, what they like about the company, and the type of feedback they get from your customers.
Use these insights to re-shape your values and learn about what is and isn’t working for your customers.
Talk to your existing customers
A great brand story can captivate and resonate with customers and increase sales. But it needs to come from a place of authenticity and truth.
The best way to appeal to a new audience is by talking to your existing customers. These are people who have already placed trust in your brand and purchased from you.
How do your existing customers feel about the brand and their experiences with your products and services?
What improvements would your customers like to see in your company? Which products would they like to purchase from you and which methods would they like to use to make that purchase?
The improvements that you make to your processes as a result of this feedback will strengthen your relationship with your existing customer and form a solid base from which to grow the brand further.
Be open about the fact that you have listened to your customers and utilise your marketing channels to demonstrate how you have used this feedback to make positive changes.
Review the competition
By now you have gathered that your brand story is more than just a catchy slogan. It’s a way of truly differentiating your business from your competitors.
To do this effectively you will need to review your competitors, their services, and products.
This is often referred to as a Brand Positioning Exercise and can form a part of the original branding process. However, brands do change over time, so it’s often good to revisit this process every few years to see how the marketspace is changing and your position within it.
Performing this task will help you define your value proposition…
Highlight your value proposition
An effective brand story helps set you apart from the crowd, describes what makes you unique, and tells customers why they should place trust in your brand.
This is referred to as the Value Proposition and should form a strong part of your marketing strategy.
Why should a customer choose your products or services over another? What are the benefits of supporting your brand? How will the customer feel by being a brand ambassador?
Answer these points effectively and you’ll stand a much greater chance of carving a lucrative niche in your market sector.
Brand storytelling is the first step in creating a narrative that helps customers understand why they should support your organisation and invest in your products. But building trust is not easy to achieve!
You need to explore the right techniques that will turn your brand story into an emotional engagement magnet.
Your brand story should be written in a tone of voice that resonates with your audience, clearly communicates your brand values and uses heritage as its foundation.
Use feedback from your team, suppliers, and customers to help inform your story and set your value proposition.
Once your brand story is complete, you can use a variety of ways to communicate with your audience, such as your website and social media. Ideally using video as a delivery method.
We help brands make the most of their story and value proposition through effective website design. Creating online experiences which connect with their target market.
If you are looking to bring your brand to life online and would like to discuss how we may be able to help you achieve your goals, feel free to get in touch.
We’re always happy to discuss new projects and will always be open and honest with our advice and suggestions.
We look forward to hearing from you.
Our guest blogger
This article was written for LWDA by guest blogger and freelance content writer Prateek Arora.
If you are interested in submitting a guest blog to us at LWDA, please feel free to read our article ‘top tips for guest bloggers’ before getting in touch.