Why Brands Need to Tell Better Stories
- June 13, 2023
As humans, we are psychologically wired to be fascinated by stories because of our evolution.
Our ancestors would sit around a fire and listen to tales of bravery, to the present day, where we binge-watch entire series on Netflix in a weekend. We crave compelling storytelling to enrich our daily lives.
In fact, stories are so ingrained in us that they play a critical role in the way we perceive and understand the world around us.
When it comes to storytelling in marketing, consumers can gain insight into your brand’s identity and mission by learning your brand story. The more a customer can identify with your “why,” the more inclined they are to buy what it is you’re selling.
That’s why the core concepts of storytelling are an essential part of marketing across all channels. Just like any good story, a “brand story” should be compelling, emotional, and memorable. It should draw the audience in, capture their attention, and leave them with a positive, lasting impression of the brand after the experience.
“Now more than ever brands are not just competing with their direct competitors, they are competing against the internet,” says NVE’s VP of Creative + Strategy – Content, Ty Stafford. “Brands tend to forget this. When scrolling online, we as consumers are selfish. ‘Why should I care? Why should I share?’ If your message is not begging the question, ‘How will this turn out?’ consumers have moved onto the next thing that will hook their attention. That is where story comes in. Its structure was perfected by the Greeks years ago, and although the places those stories live are changing, the foundation remains the same.”
A brand story is the narrative that defines what a brand is, what it stands for, and why what they got is better. It can also be about romanticizing the history of a brand from humble beginnings to becoming an industry titan.
NVE Experience Agency has been guiding businesses just like yours for over a decade in crafting brand stories that are authentic and captivating. We also help you clarify exactly what it is your brand messaging is trying to say.
Our approach is to show you how to provide a reason for the audience to connect with the brand, care about it, and choose it over competitors.
In celebration of its new cooking competition series “Rat in the Kitchen,” TBS set up a one-of-a-kind experience in New York City’s iconic Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood to get fans hungry for intrigue during its first season.
The “Rat in the Kitchen” art walk took over 50th Street between 8th and 9th Avenues in the heart of Restaurant Row. Visitors followed a yellow trail leading to exclusive installations, brand elements and hidden QR codes that gave them a menu of what to expect in the upcoming series. Fans and influencers got a chance to interact with NYC’s Buddy the Rat and win prizes such as a curated ‘Rat Pack’ filled with Beecher’s Handmade Cheese to nibble on while watching the show. The Rat Packs were integrated into OOH marketing, where they were shipped across the country to fans who entered to win during the season.
In the digital economy, consumers are constantly bombarded with sales messaging from brands online. All brands compete for the eyes of users while attention spans are steadily declining.
Brands need to tell better stories if they expect anyone to listen. A brand story is presented through facts and signals the emotions you want your iconography to evoke long into the future. In contrast to advertising, where it’s a competition for the customers’ attention, a brand story doesn’t need to appeal to everyone. The target audience is enticed through emotional storytelling that establishes a deeper connection with the customer.
According to Dr. Gloria Mark, a professor of informatics at the University of California, Irvine, who studies how digital media impacts our lives, found the decline in our ability to stay focused has never been lower. In 2004, Dr. Mark measured the average attention on a screen to be 2½ minutes. A few years later, Dr. Mark found attention spans to be about 75 seconds. Now, people can only pay attention to one screen for an average of 47 seconds.
That’s why it’s best to show instead of tell, when it comes to promoting connection with a brand.
NVE Experience Agency was tasked with bringing attention to the release of the third film in the 50 Shades of Grey trilogy. We created, advertised, and planned a multi-room, pop-up experience based on scenes from the new movie to immerse attendees in the storyline.
This event encompassed all of the film’s dark allure and romantic intrigue. With elaborately detailed themes, NVE brought to life several memorable sets from the film, such as Mr. Grey’s office and the notorious Red Room. The film’s intricate design elements each conveyed a different aspect of the story, giving viewers a richer, more physical familiarity with the film’s story.
Storytelling in marketing allows businesses to create an emotional connection with their audience. By telling a story, businesses can tap into the audience’s emotions and create a sense of empathy, relatability, and inspiration. This is because an emotional connection builds trust and loyalty, making the audience more likely to choose that brand over others.
A good story is not soon forgotten. Storytelling in marketing makes a brand name easier to remember. When a brand tells a compelling story, it can stick in the audience’s mind, creating a lasting impression. This can be especially powerful in the social media age we live in now, where people can share and spread the story to a wider audience.
In a crowded marketplace, it can be challenging to differentiate your brand from competitors. Storytelling in marketing can help set your brand apart. By telling a unique story, businesses can differentiate themselves from competitors and build a stronger brand identity.
Storytelling in marketing can also boost engagement and conversion. By creating an emotional connection and making the brand more memorable, businesses can increase engagement and promote the audience to take action. This can lead to a higher conversion rate, whether that be in the form of sales, sign-ups, or other actions.
Here are three simple, but essential tips to keep in mind when crafting your brand story:
Know who you are speaking to. What are their aspirations? What are their fears? By understanding your audience, you can create a story that speaks to the subconscious of your target audience so they can’t help but be drawn in.
When it comes to storytelling in marketing, it’s important to keep it simple. A story that is too complex can be confusing and will likely be filled with corporate jargon. Keep the story tight and focused, with highlights of the brand’s beginnings, journey, and present-day accomplishments.
Authenticity is key when it comes to effective storytelling in marketing. The story should be true to the brand’s identity and values. People are smart and can tell when a story is fabricated, so it’s important to keep it real.