May 30

The Purpose of Brand Storytelling

Noemi Zelaya

The Purpose of Brand Storytelling

All of us love a good story.
“In the beginning”….
 “Once upon a Time”…. 
“In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit..”
Brian McDonald, award winning screenwriter, and author of the book Invisible Ink, defines the purpose of stories this way: “At their most essential, stories are about survival. They teach us how to understand and to live in the world. They help us to cope, to understand, to dream, and to heal. At their core, stories let us know we’re not alone.”
As designers and marketers, we get to know our clients and hear their answers to the questions: who are you, what do you do, who is it for, and how do you do it differently? Not everyone is able to answer these questions clearly, and we have a process to guide them to discover these answers for themselves. In essence, we help our clients find their brand story.
We live in a very creative and inventive world. As humans we have an innate desire to find solutions to the needs we see around us. The best solutions come when we seek to make easier what is difficult, to simplify what is complicated, and to fix what is broken. We are also communal. We don’t only want to find solutions to serve ourselves, but also for others who may have the same needs as ourselves.

Standing Out

What if others have seen the same problems and produce the same or a similar solution?  How do you make your solution stand out? (This is usually one of our clients' first questions.)
However I think if we start here and let this question drive us we’ll end up doing something different for the sole purpose of standing out and run the risk of becoming gimmicky and disingenuous.

So how do you set yourself apart from others while remaining authentic?

We believe the power is in a good story.

Good stories allow us to relate and empathize with one another. People seldom like being sold to but love to be understood. You may have a really good product, but if your pitch fails to hit the mark in understanding your audience’s needs it’s not going to inspire the confidence nor the trust to get them to try what you’re offering. A good story is driven by knowing and relating to your audience, but also it helps you attract the right audience. It starts by knowing yourself. Asking the following questions may help you discover yourself and your potential audience:

Who are you trying to help and why?

Why do they need your solution as opposed to the other good solutions out there? 

Why is your solution the best for them?

How does it improve, help, or heal their current situation?

How does it fulfill their need longer or better than other solutions out there?

The clearer you understand your own intentions and offerings, the easier it is to understand who can benefit from what you have to offer. It’s true that we may not have total control with how we are perceived. We can tell a story, but listeners and onlookers may perceive it their own way. Though it may feel defeating to not have full control over their perception, if you don’t tell your own story, you’ll leave it up to others to write their own about you.
Be brave enough to go deeper. You may think you don’t have anything unique, or special, but you do! What sets you apart from others is YOU! You are the secret sauce, the X-factor, and the special ingredient that is different from the rest.
It’s time to uncover your brand’s identity.

If you're stuck we want to help!

Keep coming back here for more insights, or reach out to us now. We’ll help you uncover the brand within.