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Business Storytelling 101
Do you know what corporate storytelling is? It’s a world of its own and is the essence of marketing strategies.
Marketing is an integral aspect of any business. A business might have connections or pre-existing clients but without the marketing side, sooner or later it’s going to collapse. Marketing strategies have certain factors that decide their worth and what they can do for a business. However, there’s one aspect that stands out in the field of marketing, it’s corporate storytelling.
Some people might even suggest that storytelling for business is bigger than marketing itself. They might be right as it can change the way your company is perceived by most.
Marketing is no longer about the stuff that you make but about the stories you tell.Seth Godin
What is Corporate Storytelling?
Business storytelling in essence is about not your product but the story behind it and how it can create stories when people use it. Apple’s marketing strategy is all about corporate storytelling. Steve Jobs during an interview once said, ‘It’s more fun to be a pirate than to join the Navy’. This statement led to the inspiration behind Apple’s storytelling techniques.
Apple has always focussed on creating a target audience and not searching for them. In fact, the beginning years of the company are referred to as the Rebel Years. Where Apple consumers considered themselves to be Rebels or Free-Thinkers.
Corporate storytelling can be defined as a form of expression where a business entity engages with its audience in the form of a story. Human beings naturally are obsessed with stories and when a business plays an effective story card, it connects with us in ways we can’t imagine.
So, the question arises about how to develop a marketing strategy based on business storytelling:
Dig Deep in your Philosophy:
We all start businesses for a reason. There’s a deep philosophy that underlies why we want to accomplish something. Branding loves a nice little story but it gets stronger if it’s backed up by a philosophical one. Digging into your philosophy can provide you the first clues on how you can formulate your corporate storytelling.
Remember it’s not the products that customers are attracted to, it’s the stories. Stories can make an impact bigger than any marketing tactic. Once you realize your business’s true philosophy you’ll be able to convey your story much more effectively.
Authenticity & Parameters:
Like all great business stories, your corporate story needs to be authentic. Your copywriters mustn’t cook up fiction as it can lead to disaster. Don’t try going overboard with sentiments as well as some people don’t like sob stories. You need to be authentic in the truest sense possible. Setting up the parameters of your story is part of the process of making your story appear as authentic as possible. The following questions can help you and your copywriters to set parameters of a story:
- Who is telling the story and why is it important for the business?
- When and where the story is taking place?
- As a protagonist of the story, how did you overcome the challenges?
- What is your business trying to achieve?
The questions can help you set up the boundaries of your story and enable you to formulate a stance where authenticity is the main priority.
Expand your Stories with the Help of Customers:
Your story is all about the customers and how they relate to it. Expanding your stories by involving your customers can be a great idea in terms of creating some form of relatability. Your story can be compelling or even inspirational but if it isn’t relatable with your potential customer base, chances are it will fail. Involving customers can create relatability and give meaning to your story. For example, how one of your customers was able to gain benefit from your product or service can be something that you can use.
Business storytelling isn’t a one-time thing. In fact, stories are always evolving and can lead to unexpected turns. Retaining and gaining new customers through corporate storytelling is an art. An art that few know how to master. If you feel like you have a story to tell, then what’s stopping you?
Before you start scribbling down your story, make sure you have a website! A website can be your place where you can tell your story.
tagged: corporate storytelling