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Executive's Guide to Building a Compelling Brand Story

Learn how to connect with your target audience emotionally through a brand story: from a compelling origin, visual representation to consistent messaging.

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Whether you're a seasoned marketer, a student of branding, or just someone interested in how companies position themselves in this increasingly competitive marketplace, you should know that branding experts would say that crafting a compelling brand story is one of the most critical elements of any business. This powerful tool holds your brand marketing together. But how do you make a compelling brand story work?

What is a brand story?

Brand stories are how brands speak to their audience, and they're what people remember about you.  A brand story tells how you got started, why you exist, and what you want the world to know about you.

Communicating your compelling brand story from beginning to end can take the form of a presentation, article, or advertisement - it's up to you. When done right, a compelling brand story can tell the world who you are and what makes you unique.

Importance of a compelling brand story

A compelling brand story is not just a bullet list of facts about your company—it's why you do what you do, and it's a real story that people can connect with. It's why someone puts down their coffee and reaches for your product instead of another one. It relates to the journey, or story, behind your brand--which sets you apart from other brands in the same category.

You can create deeper connections with your potential customers and employees by telling a relatable brand story, establishing a sense of pride in your brand, and ultimately increasing your revenue.

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Steps to writing a Compelling Brand Story

If you want a compelling brand story but have no idea where to start, don't worry—we got you. Here are some steps to follow to write a compelling brand story:

Step 1: Define your story

When you sit down to plot out the story your business is telling, it’s essential to have a clear and strong mission statement. This will guide you in finding the stories relevant to your company and its values and help you decide what kind of voice you want to adopt when telling those stories.

The best way to figure out your mission statement is to ask yourself this question: “What are we doing here?” The answer to that question is at the heart of your business, so take some time and think about it. Once you have your mission statement down, you can start working on the rest of your compelling brand story.

Step 2: Get personal

You want to make sure your story reads authentic—not like a big-business marketing ploy. Find ways to make it more personal by talking about specific people involved with your brand and what makes them tick. Make it feel like an inside scoop from one person to another—not an impersonal press release or corporate memo where the company name appears in every sentence!

Step 3: Tell your origin story

Your origin story is an integral part of ensuring that your compelling brand story is perceived as authentic and consistent.

Why did you decide to start your own company? Obviously, money is usually the primary motivator, but what other convictions did you follow? Discuss your brand's mission and passion, as well as how they influence how it operates.

An honest story and relatable brand story about someone struggling to start a business can be a great way to connect with your audience. Your brand's origin story can really personalize it. It combines a human face and a personal story to a brand. Present yourself as a person with goals and a mission rather than a company, and you will go a long way toward establishing trust.

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Step 4: Identify and connect with your target audience

Who are you selling to? What is their age range? Where do they live? What do they care about? These questions should help you get a solid idea of who exactly it is that interacts with your brand so that as you write your compelling brand story, you can keep them in mind. The better you're able to empathize with your audience, the better you'll be at establishing genuine connections. This is why it's essential to know who they are, what they need, and how they got to where they are now.

Step 5: Communicate with powerful visuals.

It's been said that a picture is worth 1,000 words. When it comes to brand storytelling, that might actually be an underestimate. Powerful visuals can make your compelling brand story come alive and bring it to life in a way that even the best-crafted words can’t.

You can create infographics, for example, which are highly shareable on social media posts. This can help you spread your relatable brand story further and gain more followers and loyal customers.

Step 6: Maintain your consistency.

It can be tempting to make promises that you can’t keep in your brand story. However, making every effort to keep your brand consistent with the values it represents is critical to building trust with consumers. When consumers believe you have violated their trust, the relationship that you are attempting to develop through your authentic brand story elements will be completely compromised.

Step 7: Make a positive experience and impact.

Customers care a lot about how you intend to make a difference. It would be a good sign if your brand story referred to collective experiences that were overcome within your office. It would be even better if you could explain how you try to make the world a better place by resolving problems at the grassroots.

Step 8: Craft your message and promote your story.

Congratulations! You've got a compelling brand story that explains your brand. Now you just need to share it with your prospective customers. Once you've crafted your story, it's important to think about where your target customer will find the right place to discover it. It could be a website, a magazine, email marketing, or social media blog posts.

There's no one right place for this—it will vary from business to business and audience to audience. What's most important is that you choose the best channel (or channels) possible so that your prospective customers can discover your story at the right time and in the right place.

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Benefits of a compelling brand story

It shapes perceptions

A well-crafted brand story has a way of sharing, strengthening, and even challenging core values. At its core, transformational marketing seeks to influence people's perceptions and behaviors in order to achieve the best possible results. Successful brand stories contribute to this process by strengthening meaningful connections and creating memorable experiences based on feelings rather than facts and figures.

It brings your brand's personality to life

There is a time and a place for facts and figures. However, in marketing, readers are more likely to absorb a message with an emotional connection to it and engaged with it. Effective storytelling incorporates your brand's personality to help readers get to know you better.

It makes your brand human

One of the most important benefits is that telling a compelling brand story makes your brand human. People want to buy from brands they like and trust, and by finding the human side of your brand, you can connect with your audience on a deeper level.

Final Thoughts

What a relief! You're now ready to create your own compelling brand story. We know that branding can be intimidating, and we want to make sure you don't have to spend hours figuring out how to do it. We know that it can be tough to get yourself out there, especially if you're just starting out.

But we also know that when you're able to tell your story in a way that really resonates with people, it can help you stand out from the crowd and make a real impact on your industry. Make sure to follow these steps we've mentioned to create a compelling brand story in no time. Good luck!

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