Written by Vineet Sethi
The human mind is built for a story. Since the beginning of recorded history, we have been telling and listening to stories. The human brain is hardwired to respond to storytelling.
Storytelling has come a long way from being a tool for the oral traditions of pre-literate cultures.
Today, storytelling is not confined to bedtime or the fairy tales we grew up with. It is everywhere: from brands to bedtime and even advertisements.
Why storytelling works so well
There are a few reasons why storytelling works so well.
1. Storytelling Appeals To Our Emotions
Since the beginning of time, stories have been used as a form of communication. The earliest forms of human communication were stories. Why? Because stories appeal to our emotions. Often, people have been found to have higher oxytocin levels than those who have only been given facts and figures. Oxytocin is a chemical that helps people build trust and likeability. The more you listen to a story, the more you get drawn into it. This makes it easier to communicate your ideas and values through storytelling.
2. Storytelling Appeals To Our Imagination
Stories not only appeal to our emotions but also our imagination. When we listen to a story, we imagine what it would be like if that story were happening to us. This also helps us relate to a brand better.
3. Storytelling Appeals To Our Curiosity
When a person is curious about something, they are often more likely to ask questions and look for answers. This is especially true when it comes to stories. People are curious about what happens next in a story and often want to know the conclusion. It is easier to communicate ideas and values through storytelling because people want to know what happens next.
There are many ways a story can be used strategically to communicate effectively and efficiently. Let’s look at how storytelling is used effectively across different contexts and how it works so well.
Brands And Storytelling: Telling The Brand Story
The best brands have a story. The story of how they came to be, why they exist, and what they aim to do. The story of a brand is what gives it a personality. It helps people understand what the brand is about and why they should buy it. At its core, a brand is just a promise. It is a promise to the consumer of what the brand can do for them. And at the same time, it is a promise to shareholders of how the brand can make them profits. A brand story is a promise that has been told as a narrative to the consumer. It is something that has been revealed through various mediums. Traditionally, it has been told through print, radio, and TV ads. But in today’s digital age, it is being told on websites, blogs, podcasts, social media, and even email marketing.
Advertising And Storytelling: Telling A Selling Story
Advertising is something most people tend to tune out. Advertisements have to be interesting enough to make us stop and pay attention. Advertising is a costly and time-consuming medium. It is also challenging to do well. But, when it works, it is one of the most effective ways to reach a large audience. The best way to use advertising as a storytelling device is to make sure that the story you are telling is a selling story. A selling story is designed to make the target audience take action. The best way to make people take action after being told a story is to tie it back to the product you are selling.
Marketing And Storytelling: Telling A Marketing Story
Marketing is responsible for everything that happens before the sale. The best marketing strategies lead to a healthy sales funnel. The marketing funnel is acquiring customers and turning them into repeat customers. The marketing funnel starts when someone hears about your brand and ends when they make a purchase. Different stages of the marketing funnel have their challenges. For example, early marketing strategies are often focused on getting brand recognition. Later marketing strategies often focus on making customers aware of the product and convincing them to buy it. The best way to use marketing as a storytelling device is to make sure the story you are telling is a marketing story. A marketing story is designed to make people want to buy your product.
3 Tips To Telling Better Brand Story
- Make sure your story is authentic. If you tell a fake story, you will lose customers and damage your brand.
- Make sure your story is relevant. Your story has to be relevant to your target audience. You cannot tell a story meant for kids to a group of businessmen.
- Make sure your story is memorable. The best stories are the ones that stay with you. A story that is easy to forget has no value.
Storytelling is not just a bedtime ritual but a way of life. Businesses would do well to tap into this innate desire of people to be told a story because that is the surest way to gain their attention and interest. Storytelling is one of the most effective ways to market a product or service, as it can make even the most boring topic interesting and engaging. And more importantly, it can help brands build relationships with their target customers by creating a deep emotional connection.
At Beyond The Panorama, we work with businesses to develop their digital brand presence, and a big part of that is content writing for various channels. If you are looking for help to organize this business function, we would love to have a conversation and set it up!
Reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or on our social media channels.