The term brand storytelling has been thrown around a lot in the past few years and it will continue to do so. Before diving into the why, let’s set the record straight on what brand storytelling actually is.
Brand storytelling is essentially a marketing concept that aligns a brand’s purpose and mission with consumers to establish an emotional connection between the brand and consumer. Distilling it down further, it is about telling who you are as a brand, what you stand for and why you exist.
With every new marketing concept, there are doubts in marketers whether brand storytelling will help in converting these connections to sales and other lower funnel objectives. Let’s take GEICO insurance as an example.
GEICO insurance cleverly uses brand storytelling to separate their brand from others – especially so in a cluttered marketplace with similar products. They leveraged on their mission of providing affordable and dependable insurance to U.S. drivers and craft their brand story around the key message of “fifteen minutes could save you 15% or more on car insurance”. By broadcasting their mission, it establishes common ground between GEICO and their consumers. The introduction of a hero character increased the relatability factor and helped them stay memorable. Results of such storytelling is really telling indeed – started from catering insurance for federal government only to now being the 2nd largest auto insurer in the States since going public.
If there isn’t enough to sway to leverage on brand storytelling, there are some other reasons that may change your mind.
The opportunity with brand storytelling is huge now and for the future. Not only it helps to differentiate your brand from competitors, it also creates an emotional connection. According to Harvard Business Review, forming emotional connections with consumers is important than customer satisfaction. Hence, brands have to shift from pleasing their customers to being one with their customers by letting them understand the essence of their brand, and how to be part of the brand.
While brand storytelling is a great way to create resonance with consumers, it is imperative for brands to walk the talk and most importantly, say what they mean. In the time where transparency and honesty are valued very much by consumers, a fake or misleading brand story can be the downfall of a brand.
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