Time and time again I meet with business owners. While the industries are always different, the dialogue is the same. “We’re still trying to figure out who we are. Honing our brand’s voice is challenging. Who is our ideal market?” As I work with these individuals to hone message, now more than ever knowing your brand narrative is essential to stand apart in this digital age.
Keep reading for the full post after the jump!
Brand Narrative: What It Is and Why It Matters?
How do you get started?
Every individual has a pain point, an aha moment, or a passion that causes a shift within. For most, this is why they started their own business. As you write it out think through the essential elements of story. Who are the characters present? What is the motive of the character? Where is the setting? What is the climax, build, and resolution?
Start here. Know your customer.
To often as we build a brand we start with the things we love, are visually drawn to, and the message we want to get out to the world. The problem? We’re not creating a brand and solution our customer desires. Before you sit down to add visuals, dream of campaigns, or build out a feed, do a bit of homework on your ideal customer. What do they desire? What do they value? How does your product or solution meet the pain points and problems they have? More than a solving a problem, dive deeper and hone into the specifics of their drive, values, and motives. (And really know them: this goes far past saving someone time and money.)
Pro Tip: How does your audience relate to what you’re currently offering? By reviewing your numbers and analytics, you will be able to tell what messages resonate with your audience and what messages have fallen flat.
Dive in. Words, meanings, and split second narratives. (Think back to your English class.)
As you build out your brand narrative, think through all literary devices you were taught in English class. From alliteration to metaphors, to from-to narratives, or split second stories, use these devices to hook readers at the start of messaging to invite further engagement (and reading following copy.)
Is it a clear and compelling story?
As you draft your brand narrative, is the story clear and compelling? Does it relate to your customer? Can you tell the story within a 30 second narrative that would entice someone to want to learn more?
As you tell your story think about the best mediums to show over tell.
We have less than a few seconds to capture our audience’s attention. Assess the medium you’re using to tell the studio and offer examples that are appropriate to the medium. (P.S. Did you know that the way your audience interacts with a medium affects your message?) If you’re still writing as if you were writing a paper or book, it’s time to rethink your communication style. How can you use formatting, headlines, bold type, and a title on an article or post to immediately capture the attention of your audience?
Use these storytelling prompts to get started:
It all started when….
Have you ever wondered….
From _________ to ___________… (Great for hooks, results, and client testimonials)
It all changed when….
I looked into the eyes of failure and said…. (Great for the pivots, why you started your business, or explaining motivation as an entrepreneur)
Want to keep going? Here’s great resources to continue crafting your brand narrative: