All brands have a story. Even yours. But if you aren’t sure what your brand story is, you aren’t able to share it with others. And when that happens, marketing falls flat. After all, your message is the foundation of all that you do in the marketing realm. A solid message is imperative. You can’t build a home without a foundation, and you can’t build marketing without a message.
The Basics of a Good Story
Whether you read a book or watch a movie, you’ll find a predictable storyline. Authors and screenwriters follow a pattern, mostly because it works. All well-crafted stories include a beginning, middle, and end; a hero and a guide; and an obstacle the hero has to face and overcome. Those are the basics of a good story.
And for the most part, those are also the basics of a good brand story.
Beginning, Middle, and End
You have a launch story that’s associated with your brand. It’s how you got started, and for most businesses, it’s included on the about page of their website. While you may not yet have an end to your brand story, you do have a beginning, and you’re currently in the middle.
There’s a reason companies add an about us page to their websites: It builds credibility and “realness.” Potential customers want to hear about your brand story. So tell them.
Hero and Guide
Everyone wants to be the hero, right? What little kid didn’t want to be Wonder Woman, Superman, a sheriff, or a ninja—all of whom swoop in to save the day? But when it comes to your brand story, as much as you may want to be the hero, you can’t be. That’s because there’s really only one hero to your story—and that’s your customer.
Don Miller, the brains behind StoryBrand, was recently a guest on Mike Michalowicz’s Entrepreneurship Elevated podcast and brought this idea to light for Mike’s listeners.
You need to frame your message in a way that positions your customers as the hero of their story. But then who are you? Yep, you’re the guide. You’re Obi-Wan to Luke Skywalker or John and Martha Kent to a young Kal-El. You shine a light on how your customer, or hero, can win in their story.
Obstacle to Overcome
Often referred to as a pain point, the obstacle is the thing your customers are struggling to get past and overcome. If you sell HVAC services, it might be an AC that’s not working when it’s 110ºF. A Realtor’s customers may be overwhelmed with all the choices in buying or selling a house. Regardless of your industry, there is always some situation that your target market wants to get out of. Frame your brand story to sell them the solution so they can truly be the hero.
Sharing Your Brand Story
Once you get a handle on how a story works, whether in marketing or a great film, you can build and share yours. Just a few minor tweaks on your website, brochures, sales calls, and in person when you’re meeting with people can make a huge difference in your results.
Take some time to look at your website. Do you tell visitors what problem you solve and how you’re going to help them solve it? Are you even using the word “help” in your message? While heroes most certainly help people (it’s kind of their thing), guides help without looking for the limelight. They are willing to sacrifice to stay in the background and let the hero shine.
As the guide in your brand story, you need to share how you help your heroes overcome their obstacles and win.
It’s really just that simple.
At Ink & Quill Communications, we act as a brand shepherd to help our partners define their stories and share them in a way that resonates with their customers and drives those customers to action. We’re big fans of superheroes here, and while we have the capes, we are happy to step back from the spotlight and let our partners bask in the glory.
If you are struggling with creating and sharing your story in a way that has potential customers knocking down your door, we’d love to help. Schedule a complimentary discovery call and learn how 10 minutes can mean big wins for your brand story.