You’re putting out content. Posting to social media. Running online ads that only seem to be costing you money and resulting in very few – if any – leads. You’re trying to build an online presence, trying to tap into marketing your business, and most times you are met with only crickets.
You are left feeling frustrated and like you wasted your time.
Everything you read is telling you to do those things and the customers should flood in….but they’re not.
Marketing in a digital age is a noisy space. Overwhelming, time-consuming, and just plain frustrating most of the time. You see other brands and small businesses rocking their online presence but you just can’t get out of information overload to figure out how they are doing it.
You’re not alone.
Your customers are feeling that same information overload you are when trying to solve their problem…the one you and your business easily solve.
Most of the time, our brand messaging, marketing messaging, and sales messaging are not clear and we just add to our customer’s overwhelming. This leads them to go find another business/brand that speaks more clearly to their problem. Because of this information overload, people choose brands that communicate simply and clearly.
So how do we clarify our messaging, connect with our customers and increase our sales? How do we cut through the noise?
“A brand is no longer what we tell the consumer it is—it is what consumers tell each other it is,” Scott Cook, Co-Founder of Intuit.
So, how do we craft that narrative?
Our brains are trying to constantly do two things:
- Survive and Thrive – every person’s brain has the job of keeping them alive. This means they are always scanning their environment for information that will help them survive and thrive. People are looking for opportunities to move ahead in life by saving money, gaining status, associating with a tribe, and more. The essential idea is that every person is wired to try to advance their life in a positive direction.
- Conserve Calories – because it takes calories to process information, humans are designed to ignore information they don’t need in order to survive and thrive. People will tune out if the information they are reading can’t easily be associated with their survival.
Since this is how the human brain is wired, we must make sure our messaging communicates in a clear and simple way on how we help our customers survive and thrive.
But Why Story in Marketing?
Story is the most powerful tool to compel the human brain. Storytelling is a fundamental human experience that unites people and drives stronger deeper connections. From the earliest recorded history, storytelling was a method used by cavemen to communicate, educate, share, and connect.
Story allows our brains to wander and daydream which, believe it or not, is a tool for survival. Our brains also remember a well-told story better than boring facts and stats. AND story works for every type of learner.
Now that we have established why storytelling is a powerful learning method and an important strategic tool in our business, having a story framework is a must to cut through the noise and create a simple and clear message your customer will connect with. Story frameworks teach us how to position our products and services so people pay attention. One of my favorite story frameworks is the StoryBrand brand script framework.
Every good story has seven essential elements in its framework.
The Seven Essential Elements Of A Good Story
- A character
- With a problem
- Meets a guide
- Who has a plan
- And calls them to action
- Which can lead to failure
- Or success
Having a strong story framework helps you:
- Identify your ideal client and understand what they desire most.
- Identify the struggles they are facing internally and externally.
- Strategize a plan for establishing your business as a guide that your clients come to for solutions to their problems.
- Establish what success looks like for your clients and then focus our efforts on marketing towards that.
How to Create a Brand Story
With the essential elements of a good story you get to start filling in the details of your customer and your business and build your brand story – let’s jump into 3 brand story creation tips to get you started.
Tip #1: Get rid of the fluff marketing and jump into the action
Refine your elevator pitch. Your customer doesn’t want to hear all the nitty-gritty details of how your business journey started back in your sophomore year of college when you were sitting in your second story, way too small, dorm room, and realized your English class wasn’t giving you real-life, tactical direction…
Did I lose you yet?
Exactly. Your customer wants to know, rather quickly, how you can help them. Jump right into the story, right into the action and if they need to ask questions, so be it – you’ve got their attention.
Tip #2: Make them the hero + step out of the spotlight.
Your customer needs to see themselves in your story, tell their story. We want to invite customers into a story. To do this, the first thing we need to do is identify something they want. A story starts when the hero (customer) wants something. We must stimulate a desire in our customers or stakeholders by identifying something they want.
They’re looking for someone like you to come in and assist them on their path to winning the day. If they see you as the hero, they’re just going to go on their way and find somewhere they do fit in.
Tip #3: Create a clear plan for the hero to win the day
By positioning yourself as a guide you express empathy for their problems and demonstrate authority by showing them you are competent to help them solve their problems.
Next, you need to give the customer a plan, baby steps that essentially say “It’s easy to work with us. Just take these steps.” Giving a customer a plan dramatically increases their engagement.
Customers trust a guide who has a plan.
What to do next?
Phew! It’s a lot. I hope this article helped you start to understand why your brand messaging is so important and how it helps your business stand out and become a leader in your industry.
Don’t let it overwhelm you, just take a few steps each day to start crafting your brand story and it will be the foundation for your marketing, website, and any content going forward.
Ready to take action and start implementing your brand story in your business? Download our FREE Business Owner’s Guide to a Winning Website workbook to apply your messaging to your website to increase sales, create loyal customers, and stop losing to the competition in your business.