Brand building is no doubt the foundation of every successful business in this modern era of service orientated economy. Many companies with quality products and services have struggled to survive the competition just because they have failed to connect with the emotion of the customers (current and potential).
In the past, focus is placed on processes and internal business operations alone whereby the attraction and keeping of the brightest and most talented employees to champion a highly efficient processes and designs was all that mattered.
In today’s competitive business environment where technology has spoilt customers to the extent that no one wish to settle for second best, it has evidently become increasingly difficult to convince customers and new clients to buy into your product or service.
Over the last few years, I have helped some companies (for confidentiality reason, would not be mentioned here) build enviable royal client database just by helping my clients tell their stories in truth and spirit. The secret is to tell your story in a non-sales pitch manner- people will always tell when you are trying to sell a product to them.
In order for your story to transform into a brand building tool, it must have some features and qualities which will be briefly discussed in the following paragraphs.
FEATURES OF STORIES THAT CAN BUILD A SUSTAINABLE BRAND
- The story must have human face: no one will believe a story that is mechanical in nature. Examples of mechanical stories are marketing and sales copy that most organization throws about. The story must not be full of roses in order to create the emotional connection between a brand and its customers.
- The story must be remarkable: not all stories are worth telling, you can’t expect anyone to listen to a story of how the accountant of a company met his wife. In mass communication, journalists are well informed about the fact that an event must be news worthy before it can be reported.
- The story must be about a response: the theme of the story must be centered on a company’s response in resolving a problem. It can be a story of how a business responds to climatic and environmental changes.
- The story must be persuasive: I have never heard any success story that is not persuasive enough to capture the attention of the public. Persuasive writing is an art that can be learned, many companies that I consult for now include as part of the job description for their public relation officer to write persuasive story about a company.
- The story must be true: more harm than good will be done if the stories you tell are not true. The truth will sure be out no matter how long it takes. To begin with, your employees will start to lose confidence in the company’s mission as contained in the mission statement if the company cannot tell the public stories that are based on truth.
A company that manages to consistently tell stories that meets the above qualities will discover that over time, its customers and employees would take over the story telling activity from them. This is when an entity would see increased threads on forums where they are being discussed in positive manner.
Getting information out there for people to see is no longer as difficult as it used to be some years ago. Companies can tell their story using any of the following avenues: Blog, Forum, Television, Sponsoring a social event locally, Buying editorial column from reputable newspapers, etc. Some of these means of communicating with your prospective clients are free while some are paid. Where possible, companies should use the free options of telling the world their story.
The tips that I have shared in this article today are strategies that has worked for my clients. I have no doubt that it will work for your company, all you have to do is to start implementing the ideas you have got from this post. The ideas in this article are the foundation to building your brand on solid business intelligence architecture.
Remember that emotions are created, guided and nurtured through story telling. Note that emotion in this context is not same as sentiment.