8 tips to build your brand’s storytelling
🕒 READING TIME | 3 MIN
Storytelling is a method that uses words or audio-visual resources to convey a certain content. It’s been widely used in advertising and in marketing strategies as a way to promote a brand or company through indirect sales. It’s considered a great tool to share knowledge as the art of story-telling brings people closer together and can be effectively applied to sell products, services or ideas.
If your company or brand is in the early stages of building your storytelling, there are a few guidelines to be taken into account when developing your story.
Number 1 – Prove and show
In sales storytelling, you have to make the story real and you can do that by presenting characters, settings or scenes, with visual examples and real problems. Companies and brands should increasingly bet on showing their client how the product/service can benefit them or solve problems and not only product/service’s features.
Number 2 – Use a realist and the most natural dialogue possible.
You should not use stories with far-fetched settings or words that are not used in your potential client’s everyday life. They can easily lose focus and notice the lack of naturalness in what’s being conveyed. Very formal words or the exact opposite – slangs and expressions with foul language – will sound odd and out of context. Besides, storytelling should not be a deceiving or too fictional piece. Depending on the strategy for each company and brand, some points may be exaggerated in order to make the story more expressive or creative, but, if the potential client loses credibility in the story, it will also lose their attention. An interesting technique for realism is showing it to a similar client, who is already benefiting from the product or service.
Number 3 – Provoke imaginations and senses.
The product/service the company or brand is selling has a scent, produces sounds or images? Does it move? Does it promote a material result? Use it to convey to your potential client. This technique plays a key role in appealing to its audience’s senses, making the experience more realistic. It might also instigate the imagination of the potential client on the benefits they will enjoy regarding the product or service.
Number 4 – Take advantage of the “hooks” and promote your own “cues”.
Companies or brands should pay attention to the what the client talks about and should use information such as “hooks” for the story in development. Therefore, the potential client will feel the company or brand is connected to what they said and pays importance to what’s being said. Simultaneously, it may be interesting to leave a cue for the potential client to proceed to speak. Storytelling will be more interesting if it’s a dialogue, instead of a monologue.
Number 5 – Bring the facts into your audience’s reality.
Telling your product or service’s story with intricate examples that are not part of your potential client’s everyday life is useless. You have to understand their habits before starting a narrative as that’s the only way you can address your product or service’s features in a reality that fits into your buyer’s life. So, it might be necessary to adjust your story and make your potential client the leading actor. For instance: “As with John, you can…”.
Number 6 – Inspire, motivate or provoke desire.
A salesperson who is a good storyteller will take their audience on a journey in which they’ll feel inspired and motivated. Therefore, you must structure your dialogue to direct your ideas in order to keep your audience engaged throughout the entire process. Through words and demonstrations, your potential client should feel excited to the point of choosing to acquire a specific product or service. Meaning, the product or service should be used as living characters of your story.
Number 7 – Bring different points of view – all positive.
By converging several ideas in communication, the company or brand will show its audience how different branches of thought come together to form a product or service. If the audience is already aware of its advantages, it would be interesting to get to know the several forms of usage and the countless advantages it provides, directly and indirectly. The more information the better. Therefore, companies and brands should provide examples of testimonies, indications, recommendations from other clients, as well as examples of happy clients.
Number 8 – Finish off with a positive resolution.
At the end of the sale process communication, the client should be satisfied. Every doubt should have been resolved. That’s the only way your client will feel safe to make the purchase. So, the company or brand should raise the following questions: (1) has the client understood how the product or service works? (2) has the client understood it will benefit them? (3) are the benefits exemplifying and can even suggest other equally relevant benefits in the imagination?; (4) is the client curious? If the company or brand was able to answer such questions in a positive manner, the storytelling role has been successfully fulfilled.
MA Marketing Course Leader
LSDM – London School of Design and Marketing