Pedro Pinto January 20, 2022 8:00 am

How Good Storytelling Helps You Build Connection with Customers

We as people evolved to love stories. When we’re toddlers, we’re told bedtime stories. As we grow, we read storybooks and watch movies. Video games, now the biggest entertainment industry in the world, are evolving more towards fulfilling narratives than pure gameplay. When we’re asleep, we dream up our own stories; they teach us lessons, warnings, and empathy; they’re part of our DNA. As a business, shouldn’t you be utilising storytelling to build connections with your customers?

 

In this article, we’ll talk about what brand storytelling is and how you can leverage it to attract customers and retain them over time.

 

What is Business Storytelling?

Every company has an “about us” page. As we talked about last time, people want and enjoy a personal connection to the brands they do business with, and they’ll want to see who you are and what you’re about.

Enter business storytelling. Simply put, it’s your brand’s story; beginning, middle, and end. By making your business a narrative, and especially by humanising your business, you can earn the trust and goodwill of potential customers. After all, 55% of people are more likely to buy from a business if they like your story.

 

Your Brand’s Story

You’re most likely familiar with how stories work. We’re talking about the who/what/why/when/where; basic stuff, but it works. However, before you rush off to start writing, first have it clear in your mind what the outcome is. What’s the message of your story? What lesson did you — or what lesson do you want your customers — to learn? Perhaps it’s about the power of hard work or never giving up, or maybe a call to be more environmentally friendly. It usually helps to work backwards.

Above all, you should be authentic. Any hint of deception will be sniffed out and will spell disaster for your brand. If you don’t have a majestic and interesting background, absolutely do not manufacture one. Instead, why not focus on the people involved, the history of your product, or the place your business came from? Stories are everywhere, you just have to look.

Speaking of people, use them in your advertising. Pictures and bios of your founders and employees go a long way to humanising your brand and creating that emotional connection that increases loyalty. 82% of customers want to form a relationship with a brand, so give them a reason to!

Don’t relegate your story to just your website. As we’ve said, everyone loves a good story, so can you weave yours through social media posts? By posting an image or short video a week, you can create suspense as people wonder what will happen next, and you can drive engagement in comments.

 

Lastly, your story doesn’t have to just be text. Video is much more powerful, as social media video generates 1200% more shares than text and image content combined. Podcasts are also a great option. Really think outside the box to spread your brand’s story; it’s worth it.

 

Case Studies Make Great Stories

Business storytelling isn’t just about telling your story; it’s also telling your customers’ stories. Word of mouth is critical to every business: 90% of customers read reviews before buying a product, so why not make that part of your narrative?

Case studies highlight customers who faced a problem and then used your product or service to overcome it. More in-depth than a review, a case study is a story of your customer and how you helped them. Featuring quotes and pictures, case studies are a fantastic way to weave the narrative that your brand is useful, valued, and trusted.

You should aim to collect these as much as possible. Offer incentives via your email, and scour social media comments and reach out. Getting pictures of people using your business (or even better, video) will bolster that trust and loyalty that is so important.

 

Examples

If you’re stuck for inspiration here are some great examples of brands that used expert storytelling to create those important connections between business and consumer.

 

Burt’s Bees

The world-famous cosmetics company used the story of its founder Burt Shavitz to great effect in both video and imagery. By following its good-humoured and hippy owner, the company espouses its beliefs in old-fashioned traditions and the power of nature.

 

Nike has always been at the forefront of engaging adverts, and this one is no exception. Instead of focusing on its story, it focuses on the struggles of minorities, Interweaving sports and society, Nike create a powerful feeling while also subtly linking back to their product.

 

United By Blue are an environmentally-driven brand, and you get that from the very first line of their story: “We organised our first community cleanup the week we sold our first t-shirt.” In one line you have everything you need to know about their brand.

 

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Welcome to our last article in our series of marketing strategies and tips for small business owners. If you’ve missed any of our previous posts you should  catch up on them here:

 

 

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