The Marriage of Brands and Storytelling
Some of the world’s most successful leaders and brands were forward thinking enough to embrace the power of storytelling ahead of their competition and counterparts. The rest of the world is slowly catching up and trying desperately to make storytelling a part of their brand and marketing strategy.
So, what exactly is storytelling in this context and why are brands suddenly re-focusing their attention on how best they can use storytelling to achieve their marketing goals?
Storytelling is simply sharing events through words and images for the purpose of education and entertainment. It is through storytelling that ideas and thoughts are first placed in our minds and where most if not all arguments stem from.
“Storytelling is the most powerful way to put ideas into the world today.” –Robert McKee
By sharing stories, we give something to the world. Great leaders have recognized the power of stories to inspire and educate an audience. When you tell a story, you impact your audience (whether positively or negatively), you leave them with an emotion and an idea to take away with them. The ability of stories to do that demonstrates just how powerful it is. There’s no denying that everyone loves a well told story in whatever form it may come.
“Brands are built around stories. And stories of identity – who we are, where we’ve come from – are the most effective stories of all. This storytelling is a powerful way to bring brands to life.” – Bill Dauphinais
Some of the world’s biggest brands have a deep understanding of just how effective storytelling can be. Take sportswear giant, Nike for example – the ethos of the brand is ingrained in inspiring stories of risk taking, progress and victory, and they have been consistent with these stories for several years.
From their advertising to sponsorships, the consistency of Nike’s stories has led to an incredible amount of cult followership of the brand.
Check out these two videos: one from April and the other from July:
The Conductor by Nike
Unlimited Serena by Nike
The emotional stories of doing, taking risks and winning never change and that’s how you know great brand-storytelling.
Quite a number of brands such as IKEA, Apple and Air bnb are also doing a great job at ensuring the stories they tell and share are consistent across multiple channels and platforms – from TV to radio and social media, these brands are creating relevant stories that emotionally connect with their consumers and highlight the usefulness of their products and services at the same time.
As consumers become less receptive to advertising and brand messages, it becomes increasingly important for brands to strive harder to build emotional relationships with consumers through well thought out stories that address a passion point for both the brand and consumer.