Storytelling in Marketing
Marketing can often get a bad rep.
But think about it…
Anytime a field is saturated, it has the good, the bad & the ugly.
One of my first opportunities in the business world was as an affiliate marketer for global campaigns.
And the campaigns often promoted cellphone games & cellphone wallpapers.
I would buy traffic on websites & use a lot of display banners & popups to promote the offer.
Even though I was making money, I didn’t feel right.
The numbers were there, but my heart wasn’t.
Because I believe I wasn’t marketing with the right mindset.
Over time, I came to learn, spamming a bunch of people hoping that some people would buy may be a good method for some.
But if you’re trying to develop a brand?
Not the best choice.
‘How do you think a brand should market?’
Lead with value first. Be creative & be entertaining.
That’s when you realize marketing is actually a FUN process for the marketer and the consumer.
It’s a mutualistic relationship.
In this post, I want to discuss the power of storytelling in marketing.
Learn an innovative way to get your message out there & build a bulletproof brand at the same damn time.
Is Marketing Necessary?
Marketing & sales can often make us feel uncomfortable.
Especially if you are someone who is just about the ‘craft.’
That’s the wrong mindset to have bud…
An amazing product with no marketing is like a very smart kid who doesn’t talk to anyone.
The smart kid has brilliant ideas that can revolutionize the world.
But what good will those ideas serve if it is not expressed?
Same thing with your product or service.
And in many cases, YOU are the product and service aka personal brand.
In situations like this, view it in simple terms:
Marketing is making someone aware.
Our world is run on awareness.
How aware we are showcases our maturity.
How well we make others aware of us shows our brand quality.
There are tiers to awareness though.
The fast awareness was what I was doing with buying the traffic & running ads.
PS: I am not against running ads. I think it can benefit certain brands.
The slower awareness builds a bond with the consumer.
For the storytelling in the marketing process, we can mix fast and/or slow.
A story doesn’t discriminate.
Defining the Core of a Story
A story at the most basic level is a connection of ideas.
Often times, that connection of ideas leads to a character, conflict & lesson.
The key ingredients of any good story.
‘Why is a story so effective?
Because we live in a world full of perceptions & symbols.
Our name is a symbol that represents us to the mind’s eye of an individual.
The name automatically creates a perception of you in someone’s internal world.
A story is powerful because it hits the symbols & perceptions mark.
When people digest a story, they do so by interconnecting the 2 minds:
The conscious mind speaks the formal language that we are familiar with.
English for example.
However, the subconscious mind speaks a completely different language.
And that language includes pictures & emotions.
No one taught you how to imagine.
And no one taught you how to feel.
It was just something that you were born with.
When you are born with something, that is your baseline state.
A well-executed story seems like words at first.
However, when it is digested by the audience, they are PROCESSING it via pictures & feelings.
If your story is boring or overly complex, then it will just remain words to the consumer.
How to Properly Execute Storytelling In Marketing
There are many ways to leverage storytelling in marketing for your brand.
First of all, you want to decide what sort of brand you are:
If you are a personal brand, then you need to discover YOUR story first.
A personal brand is where the business is built around you.
In my case, ArmaniTalks is my personal brand.
This brand discusses communication skills. That is the general theme.
The best way for a personal brand to relay stories in marketing is by keeping it ULTRA simple.
Just tell stories about what you are going thru & experiencing.
You’ll often be surprised by how many people are able to gain value from your first-hand experiences.
Humans crave authenticity. Do not pretend to be someone that you are not.
In this case, just share your experiences.
In my brand, one topic I talk about is public speaking.
Rather than giving a lecture on speeches, I talk about my personal experiences with Toastmasters.
In my first ever speech, I ended up choking & embarrassing myself.
Rather than leaving that part out to seem ‘cool’, I include it in a lot of my videos.
It just so happens that many of my audience members are either scared of choking a speech or are wondering what to do next after they choked one.
I share my story & the practical ways to overcome choking a speech in my content.
This allows the audience to relate.
When you have the right content, the audience WANTS to see which products you have or would recommend.
Not everyone will buy.
But what you are doing is building rapport with those who don’t buy & converting the clients who are ready at the moment.
One of my early businesses included an extreme sports entertainment company.
It deals with athletic videos, products & interviews.
This sort of storytelling marketing is a tad bit different from personal brand based marketing.
For this one, sharing your experiences can be good.
But ultimately, you want to put more focus on your audience.
The end product for my brand was compression gear.
I came to that conclusion after building an Instagram community where others would interact & post updates.
In marketing for products/services, aim to have a theme.
A targeted niche makes your life easier.
You’ll be surprised by how many people are in a targeted niche.
Our ego often thinks when we are targetting too much, it means we are excluding people.
Yes, we are excluding people to zone in on those who may love the brand.
From there, how well you know your audience will dictate how well you can create stories that relate.
Remember, a story seems like a very complex thing at first.
But ultimately, it comes down to a character, conflict & lesson.
Let’s say you are want to market for a spatula company.
Well, a spatula is within the cooking realm.
Can you niche down some?
How about a spatula for newlywed couples?
Entertain me on this one for the sake of the example.
Okay, now you can craft a story where you talk about how many millennials have no clue how to cook.
They eat out so much, that they drain their budget.
Your brand can target millennials to show them that cooking is fun.
To target even further, talk to newlywed couples who are looking for something to do.
Create practical cooking videos with the spatula that you are marketing.
If you look at the general theme of this example, you’ll notice the elements of a story are already plugged in:
Your characters are newlywed couples.
The conflict is that they don’t know how to cook & are draining their monthly budget.
And the lesson is to learn HOW to cook.
Plenty of content pieces can be spread around this simple story of your brand.
Starting from general to specific as you build your audience will allow you to constantly refine your stories.
The Long Term Effects of a Brand
A brand is powerful because it builds trust.
Or it can build the exact opposite.
If you are someone who tries to take before providing value, your brand quality plummets.
However, if you have the LONG term approach from the get-go, then you realize that value always wins.
What is value?
Value is when you are speaking to a human’s core desires.
The 5 human desires according to Josh Kaufman in The Personal MBA are the desires to:
Tackle any of these desires with your content & you will provide value.
Stories happen when you connect ideas & form a perception to the mind of the audience.
If you are a personal brand, keep it super simple.
Just share your experiences, that’s it.
Never pretend to be someone that you’re not.
And if you are a product brand, understand your audience.
And speak to that particular audience.
The audience presents itself the more targeted that you get.
Stories give your brand a body of work to stand on.
And the beauty is that it skyrockets your credibility.
Storytelling Marketing is the Future
The ability to tell stories is primal.
From cave art to the modern-day movies.
Everyone loves a good story to level up their entertainment and learning.
The future is in edutainment.
An ability to educate and be entertaining at the same time.
Marketing does not have to be sleazy and make you feel awkward.
It is MEANT to be a very fun process for all parties involved.
Evaluate your business and see where you currently stand.
And see how you can begin implementing stories into your life.
That’s how you are going to build a brand that stands the test of time.
Through the value of the Tale.
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– ArmaniTalks 🎙️🔥