Did you know people are more likely to remember a story about your business than the facts you gave them just yesterday about how many people purchased from you?
That’s because people see themselves in stories. It’s why you laughed at that movie or tried that new powder which he said made his body feel more energized.
Stories help steward trust, connection and show your values as a brand. Before we convert, we must first connect.
Here’s how to develop storytelling in your business:
Set a purpose for your story
Purpose is the bedrock to your story’s success. It is the why that carves out your goals and narrative.
You may have heard about the Three E’s of marketing. Depending on who you ask, these three E’s might have a different naming category. However we believe it all boils down to this:
Educate: content that lets your audience know who you are, why you’re a leader in your industry and establish your authority
Engage: content that gets your audience interested/excited and actively interacting with you to build a connection
To Note: Educate and Engage should be the most frequently created pieces of content. Into order to achieve:
Earn: content that helps you convert your audience into happy customers!
By not only defining your purpose in terms of target audience, overall narrative and key messaging, you should also define what goals you want it to achieve.
Choose a framework
There are undeniably many ways you can tell a story. At My Networks however, we like to keep things simple. Overcomplicating your marketing is the first step towards a cluster headache and as a result, a confused customer! Here’s a simple 3-step framework anyone can use as a springboard for their next business story:
1. Hook (a sentence to captivate attention)
2. Story (conflict and resolution told from personal experience or the experience of a customer)
3. Clear CTA (invite someone to take action)
Pick your medium
There are many forms of storytelling. Written, audio, animation… each are generative methods to connect with your audience in their own right, when planned correctly.
Before selecting your secret weapon, think about time frames and budget. Animation, for example, can be a quick and digestible way to get your message across. You can use platforms like Doodly. However, it will certainly take more time and commitment to create than a written piece of communication.
Develop content based on your end goals but also the resources you have available.
Don’t be the hero
From copy to design, people are always talking about the hero piece. And there’s a good reason for this.
There is always one defining element that will help you achieve high-impact results. And you guessed it… it’s not the features of your products and services or what they personally mean to you.
When storytelling, the hero is your target audience. Before you even begin to write your story, think about the people you are writing for and draft a creative brief. What are their current pains, what tone of voice do they relate to, if you can plant only one key message in this story, what is your main focus?
As Dharmesh Shah, CTO & Co-Founder of HubSpot says:
“Many companies have forgotten they sell to actual people. To really win in the modern age, you must solve for humans.”
Do be authentic
Storytelling does not mean you need to make up a fictional character and throw in some burning fire and a dragon to sell your product or service.
Create your stories with intention and be authentic. As avid consumers, we are living in an experience economy. This means people expect more from your brand but also that they can see through the false advertising and scarcity tactics many marketers have used in the past.
Authenticity is your key to building connections with your community. If you can master this, the story will do the work for you.
Share your story
You may have written the most riveting, soul-moving, heart-jerking story in the world, but if no one reads it you went to all that effort for nothing.
Be proactive in sharing your story and plan ahead of the final piece. How are you going to increase traffic to your new destination of connection and conversion? Pitch it to media outlets, share it on your social platforms, give it a permanent home on your website, send it out in your next newsletter, run paid ads to your blog. We’re sorry to say the hard work doesn’t end with the final draft.
It merely begins!
At My Networks, we love to write! And we love to combine words with strategy. If you need help crafting your next business story, please don’t hesitate to reach out. We’d love to collaborate and discuss your goals.