Estimated read time: 5 minutes
This article is supported and submitted by Tailor Brands as part of my sponsored content program. Tailor Brands is an automated AI branding platform that helps small businesses quickly create a brand identity.
Having a great product is important, but if you don’t know how to brand it properly, you’re not going to get very far.
Telling your brand story will allow customers to make a memorable and emotional connection with your brand. But here’s the forewarning. It’s not easy to do.
Your brand story needs to balance being informative and emotive. It also needs to be simple enough to understand quickly and stick in people’s minds.
The best brand stories can motivate audiences to take action and cause them to feel great about themselves. Something you can’t do by simply saying, “we’re the best, join us!”.
Emeritus Gerald Zaltman, a Harvard Business School professor, details in his book that 95% of purchasing decisions are made in our subconscious minds. A place where emotion rather than logic is in control of the steering wheel.
With this handy piece of information in mind, it’s no wonder that brands who want to influence buyers create well-thought-out brand stories.
If you want to foster the power of a brand story to connect with your audience, keep reading as we cover the steps you need to take.
Uncover your brand’s vision
You don’t want your story to be puzzling and erratic. It needs to be crystal clear and consistent from the beginning. Otherwise, you may end up diluting the power of your story.
So, before releasing any content into the wild, you need to make sure you have a distinct brand vision.
Think of your brand vision as your legacy. When your brand is no longer around, what will it leave behind? How will people remember it?
It doesn’t matter what your business does. Whether it’s painting fences or developing software, it’s the purpose of your brand beyond what you produce for customers.
Tesla is a great example. They sell electric cars and other scalable energy solutions like solar roofs. But their purpose, the driving force behind their business, is to help the world transition from fossil fuels to zero emissions.
When outlining your brand vision, don’t be afraid to dream big! Show your audience you want to change the world for the better. It could be you want to empower women in the workplace, advocate for increased remote work opportunities in companies, or help people in impoverished areas by donating some of your profits to charities.
There’s a simple formula you can use to help put your brand vision together:
- Action – use an action word to describe what you want to do, such as empower.
- Target audience – who are you speaking to? Try to be specific and identify who your target audience is
- Value – this is the most important word of all. What value does your audience receive for being part of your brand story?
Create a persona of your target audience
Creating a customer persona of your audience lets you know who you’re speaking to. You can create more than one if you think it’s relevant.
The idea behind creating a customer persona is to produce an avatar that you can use when crafting your story. It would be best if you found out as much as you can about your target audience. Not just the demographics, like how old they are, their gender and marital status, but also their likes, dislikes, and what they’re looking for in a brand.
You can take it even further by uncovering more about their lifestyle and beliefs if it’ll help your persona creation.
But your main goal when creating your customer personas is to identify that particular ‘itch’ other brands can’t scratch. Once you’ve uncovered what that is, you can set yourself up as the one to ‘scratch’ it. What better way to connect with your customers?
In your brand story, focus on addressing the challenges faced by your audience and show how you can resolve them.
But don’t promise something you can’t fulfill. Keep your promises grounded in reality. Otherwise, your brand story is going to be nothing but fiction.
Layout your core values
Contrary to popular belief, your brand values are actually the heart and soul of your brand. It’s the base of everything you believe in. Ideally, they should be values shared by your target audience.
Nike’s core values aren’t about generating revenue or selling as many shoes as possible. It’s about inspiration, innovation, empowerment, inclusivity, and creating sustainable products.
These are values shared by many of their audience and helps Nike humanize itself as a brand.
If you can, identify 3-5 of your own core values to use as your brand’s foundation. Incorporate them into your brand story and dig deep into the reasons why they’re important to you. If they’re honest values with real meaning behind them, your customers will forge a deeper connection with you.
How do you tell your story?
There are many different types of content you can use to tell your story. Suppose you have an online store. In that case, the copy on your website, social media posts, blog articles, videos, and case studies can help tell your brand story.
This is why it’s essential to have your brand vision, customer personas, and values written down beforehand. So that each piece of content you create is already instilled with the ingredients that make up your story.
Otherwise, you end up with an inconsistent story spread out all over the place.
It’s not easy to create a brand story that can make a powerful impact on audiences. If you’re unsure where to begin, start by exploring your closest competitors. What values do they have? What’s their vision? And what type of personas are they targeting?
The best advice anyone can give you about your brand story is to take your time. There’s no need to rush and put together a random assortment of action words and cool-sounding ideals. You won’t be able to create consistent content this way, and people will see right through you.
Take your time. Create an emotionally charged brand story that’s relevant and packs a punch with your target audience.