Storytelling 101 – Quick Guide to Get Started With Content Marketing

We are all storytellers in our own ways.

Behind every face, every brand, and every product lies a story which when shared in a compelling way can touch people’s lives and make great impacts.

Well, the art of storytelling has helped brands shape strong narratives that have successfully connected to their audiences on an emotional level.

Remember the story of the father and the son bonding over building LEGO? The couple moving into their first apartment furnished with IKEA furniture? The “Real beauty” campaign from Dove focusing on changing society’s perception of beauty and individuals negative perceptions of self?

Why is this important? It has not only helped the audience know their brand better but also empowered the brands to foster better engagement and relevance in the market.

Customers today are not so much interested in the WHAT, but they care about the WHY – and there is no better and more sustainable way to portrait that for a brand than with storytelling.

Storytelling is the marketing game that can really make a difference for small businesses and therefore, it’s time we get better at it.

To help you do that, we have created this piece dedicated entirely to storytelling and how its power can be leveraged to generate better user engagement for your brand.

What is the Role of Storytelling in Marketing?

Storytelling is an approach that brands use to project what it means to be a part of them. While many marketers still think that storytelling is all about inventing a story, the true essence of storytelling lies in the very reason why you ended up creating a brand, a product, a service or an experience.

It’s important to differentiate between ‘Good Content’ and ‘Storytelling’. You will find many marketeers considering all good content to be storytelling. Well, it might and might not be the case.

See, storytelling is about triggering emotions, experiences, undiscovered needs and relationships an audience can have with a brand.

Good content can also be informational wherein the focus of content creation is to impart maximum knowledge about the brand or its offerings.

John Simmons once said –

‘A great story transforms day to day living, inner and outer life, dream and actuality into a poem whose rhyme scheme is events rather than words – a two-hour metaphor that says: Life is like this!’

Just like any other small business marketing tactic, storytelling is also responsible to address the present situation, chronicle the conflict and come up with a solution that could transform lives.

What does it Take to Develop a Perfect Story?

But, how can you make your storytelling effective anyway? Let’s discuss that in detail.

Establish the Story You Want to Share

To tell a story in a way that makes the most impact, you will have to figure it out first.

Brands should begin their content marketing journey with a story they can always fall back on and which is worth sharing.

It’s common these days to see marketeers try weaving a story around their products and services. This is a practice which you should get rid of quickly.

You storytelling endeavor should revolve around the audience’s needs and pain points. Once you hit that, it’s time to present them with your differentiated take on the problem.

Your stories should never sell the product. It is just not meant to do that.

Establish a story that addresses the problems your target audience face and how your products or services can help them achieve their goals.

No consumer in this universe wants to be sold to. If your content marketing mentality makes you create a story that is caught up in generating quick short term sales, storytelling is not for you.

It is an art which requires you to come up with a consistent viewpoint on the audience’s problems and how your brand gears up to solve them. Establish a story that speaks about the ‘Why’ of you creating your brand.

Understand the Basics of Storytelling

To garner better user engagement and generate higher revenue over time, you need to know the basics of storytelling – something that can drive your content marketing campaigns to great successes.

We will all agree on the fact that the goal of every content marketing campaign is to drive the target audience to take action.

Since storytelling is the core of any content marketing campaign, it is important to create it in a way that serves the purpose of the campaign as well.

So, in order to generate engagement and sales, you will have to create a story that exhibits the following qualities:

– Honesty

Don’t think your audience don’t know if you’re lying or not. We humans have an innate sense for detecting when things don’t feel right.

Dishonesty is lethal when it comes to running a business. Respect your audience and provide them with authenticity. This is exactly how you earn their respect and attention.

– Personalization

What is your customer going to get out of the story?

The success of the product or service being marketed has a lot to do with establishing the amount of stake a customer is given in the outcome of the story.

The characters involved in the story should relate to the target audience. This will definitely make them care about you and your brand.

– On-Point Delivery

It’s important to be specific to what you are providing your customers.

The possibilities must be effectively shared through an explicit interpretation of what the product is about and how it performs.

Every product or service must contain your business’ values and the communication should stay consistent with them as well.

Engage Emotions and Experiences to Deliver Value

You are not going to build your small business as a brand until you make it your intention to create a level of intimacy between your products and your potential customers.

Customers usually incline towards buying from brands that share the same values.

Storytelling should trigger the emotions and values that project a better experience and life.

That said, it’s imperative for brands to strategise their storytelling in a way that addresses customer pain points and needs.

Creating emotions on the customer side through the stories you tell can make a difference in making the decision to buy your products or not – we probably all have been in a situation where we connect positive emotions with a brand, memories or a happy smile that connect deeply with our feelings.

Over to You

Storytelling is a game that can be mastered only through practice.

You will need to understand more about your audience and carve narratives that really set the tone right!

We at Media Number Seven are passionate about helping you to understand your customers better and help you to find the most authentic stories that are tailored to represent your brand – in a way that connects with customers, make them understand you better and turn positive emotions into brand ambassadors!

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Happy Storytelling!

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