April 20, 2017
When was the last time you thought about your brand story? Busy B2B marketers are often so focused on lead generation, nurturing, conversions and sales that sometimes we lose sight of the bigger picture: sharing our brand’s story with the world.
Creating and sharing your brand story is a powerful sales tool. Studies show that 63 percent of attendees remember stories after a presentation; whereas just five percent remember statistics As you think about how you’re creating and sharing your brand story, keep these five tips in mind.
1. Start with the short version
The best, most memorable stories are simple and straightforward. That’s why we still remember the nursery stories we learned as children. As you think about the story you want to tell, think about how you would tell your brand story in just a few sentences. Also known as crafting your “elevator pitch” boiling your story down to just this short paragraph will help identify the true value of your brand.
2. Fill in the blanks
Once you’ve got your elevator pitch determined, drill down further to fill in the blanks around what makes your brand what it is, and why your prospects should care about it. Think about things like:
- What is the brand promise?
- What is the brand character (passionate, generous, strong, etc.)?
- What are the brand values (integrity, commitment, speed, etc.)?
You can even embark on some fun branding exercises like “If our brand was a car, what would it be?” or “If we wrote an obituary for our brand, what would it say?” The last one is a bit morbid, but the point is you need to be able to articulate exactly what your brand is all about.
3. Make it visual
At our firm, we work with clients to convey their stories via highly visual and engaging online presentations, so we know how important images are to telling a story. As you create your brand story think about the visuals you want to use. Are your images dark vs. light, happy vs. sad, cute vs. sexy? When you share your brand story via collateral, presentations, videos and other means, be very considerate and deliberate in the images you choose to use.
4. Be personal.
Give your brand a personality. No one likes a boring brand, and even if you’re selling the most boring product in the world, you can still make it personal. Whether it be the voice and tone you choose to use in your marketing, to sharing photos of employees and team members on your website, presentations or collateral, the more personal you make your brand, the more memorable your brand story will be.
5. Map it out.
For B2B brands, their brand stories are usually shared in two places; in a video on your website and by your sales reps during sales calls. For each of these two areas you’ll want to make sure your story is on point and accurate. For video this is fairly easy to do – write your script, create your story board and make the video. With sales reps, it’s a bit more challenging, but use the same formula – write your script, create a master sales presentation and train reps how to use it. Getting everyone on the same page with your brand story is critical.
As you think about sharing your brand story, consider all the mediums where you share it and all the ways it is shared. Ask yourself, is there a better way? Perhaps it’s an infographic instead of a chart of data. Or an animated video rather than a taped interview. Or an online, interactive presentation instead of a PowerPoint. Make sure the ways you are sharing your brand story are as powerful as your story itself.
A dynamic sales and marketing professional, Ryan Gruening works with companies to help them increase revenue. He is an expert in shortening sales cycles, ensuring brand consistency and increasing collaboration between sales and marketing. In his current role as CRO at the Digideck he works with leading brands to help their marketing teams create better presentations.