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Communicate Online | Regional Edition | Advertising, marketing, public relations and media in the Arab world and beyond

Communicate Online | Regional Edition | Advertising, marketing, public relations and media in the Arab world and beyond

The 3 Ps of using storytelling to connect with consumers

James Pass, JPd

Opinion

The 3 Ps of using storytelling to connect with consumers

By James Pass, managing director, JPd

Brands have moved away from the traditional approach of putting products first. Now marketers believe in storytelling to build meaningful brands. Storytelling is an essential marketing tool that helps brands develop communication that is memorable, emotionally engaging, and profitable. A brand story need not be overly elaborative; it just needs to be simple and narrated in a manner that captivates attention. It must differentiate you from the rest of the audience because the audience cares deeply about brands that have the most compelling differentiator. Every aspect of communication – from marketing collaterals, digital presence and website – must reflect on the difference you wish to create.

Purpose

Before starting the exercise of building a brand story, it is important to understand what the brand stands for and the purpose of it. It must be true to its brand promise and must focus on something the brand believes in. Successful brands do this by finding a balance between emotions and relevance. Customers connect with brands that create an engaging story; hence, if the story is creating magical bonds, then the relationship helps upscale the business and enables a pleasant brand experience. Effective branding plays a two-pronged approach: it either convinces the customer to buy the product or helps stand out from its competitors. However, if the customer has never purchased the product before or used the service, a great story will help him associate with the brand.

Promise

Building a brand isn’t just about creating a fancy logo or a website, it’s about the promise you make to offer certain values to your customers. A brand is an extension of your identity. The most common mistake most brands make while crafting a story is that they push out marketing content without a thought behind it. Brands tend to ride on the sense that people want information without realizing that today any information about a brand is easily available and accessible on the Internet. The audience is actually looking for stories, which draw them into richer and more powerful immersive experiences.

Plan

An unplanned brand story often creates inconsistency and confusion. A brand story that is not related to your current services and product line, would for the moment attract the audience, however, would not elevate sales. One of the most crucial ingredients in getting the attention of the audience is to know them. Understanding the audience helps brands define the tone of the story and also the reasoning behind the brand. Hence, while building on a story think of it as a long lasting one; the legacy that it would uphold in the long run. When the audience sees the passion and transparency involved in the brand, they want to be a part of it at some point in time.

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