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Watch the Journey

Your Guide to Crafting a Compelling Brand Story

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Eager to learn how to build brand awareness to build a loyal customer base? Start by creating your brand story.

You encounter advertisements and promotional material daily featuring a new method businesses use to set themselves apart. These ads are more than sales pitches. They create humanized, memorable, and loveable brands.

Fewer ads nowadays include data, statistics, and product features. Instead, today’s ads build stories that pull you in and make you feel something–chills, excitement, empathy, humor.

Check out the remarkable job Google Pixel did in creating a heartfelt brand story in their 2024 Super Bowl commercial. Or how Bank of America did it in their “Boston Marathon: Reasons to Run” ad, which promotes charitable giving but doesn’t show its logo until the end. Warby Parker does an excellent job of promoting the respect, care, and craftsmanship that go into each pair of its glasses.

Today’s consumers seek a more profound reason to choose you over your competitors. What can you give them?

​Give them your story.

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Set Yourself Apart Through Your Story

You want your customers to see you as unique and different from your competition. So, you talk about your products. However, touting what your service or product does is losing its effectiveness on your audience.

Facts and figures can lose their attention. Relate the product in a way they find moving and memorable instead.

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Deciding Your Brand Story (Not Your Brand Storytelling)

There’s a brand story and then brand storytelling. The two have their differences.

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Brand Storytelling vs. Brand Story

This can be any content you put out. Take Red Bull, the energy drink brand, for example. Its stories have become a whole personality centered around adventure-seekers. You’ll see their logo splashed across exhilarating, death-defying extreme sporting events.

​However, your brand story is solely about you, which we’ll focus on in this article. It combines both facts and emotions and helps explain your values.

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How Your Brand Came About

Many brands choose to tell their origin story, and for good reason–it explains why you became you. This quest to make life better for someone else is the one thing your brand can offer that no one else can.

The story behind your product or service gives it purpose and meaning. Your story humanizes your brand.

Customers relate better to that human side. In turn, they trust you more and are more loyal to you.

Relay those authentic and memorable challenges you faced. Add in funny anecdotes if you want to add humor.

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Alternatives to Origins

Origin stories are a popular way to help explain why you created your brand. However, you have a few more options, such as writing about:

  • The selfless values you live by
  • The lives your service or product has changed​

All three options can hook your audience and make them eager to learn more about you.

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What’s in a Good Brand Story?

Your brand story should tell your business journey. Various tones and story elements help personalize it to make it truly unique.

Tones: humorous, informative, entertaining, inspirational, heartwarming
​Story Elements: characters, settings, adversity, triumph, themes

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Characters

The character could be you or your customer.

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Setting

What about the setting? The setting could be where you first formulated your idea or where your customer uses your service or product.

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Conflicts and Triumphs

Adversity and triumph go hand in hand with a good brand story. “Necessity is the mother of invention,” so the saying goes. In other words, something was imperfect; you saw the need and stepped in to create a solution. But you didn’t get roses without the thorns–you had struggles along the way.

Your brand’s conflict is integral to a compelling story. Be honest about the adversity you faced. Audiences relate and empathize with struggles.

Then, tell them about your triumph–how you solved the problem. It’s your audience's moment of emotional zen.

​Remember that conflicts and triumphs can be from the customer’s point of view.

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Theme

Pick a theme you think resonates with your dream customer. Remember to establish your core values within your theme.

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Don’t Doubt Your Uniqueness

Your closest competitor may have a similar experience in their brand story as you do. However, your story is unique. Emphasize what makes you different from the rest.

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To Include Data or Not?

Go light on the data.

Imagine sitting in a statistics class while the professor gives you a bunch of percentages. What’s the likelihood of you remembering those numbers? The same goes for your customers.

Keep the data bare bones and develop the story more. Your audience’s brain is hardwired to immerse themselves in a story and make it more memorable.

​Make data the backup singer. Tell the story using a few key data points to support your theme if necessary.

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Seek Help

You know your story because you know your ‘Why’ and your product.

Understanding your target audience may take more work. If so, invest in research. It will pay off.

Compellingly telling your story can also be a challenge. In that case, turn to a digital marketing tool to help you create an effective funnel that tells your unique story and promotes your product. Consider hiring a temporary writer to draft yours and then use your marketing tool to A/B test multiple versions of your story.

You’ll earn loyal customers and increase sales.

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Why Stories Rule

People engage more with stories. Parts of the human brain activate with stories in a way they don’t with facts and figures.

Build a story, and they will come. Give your story a good opening hook, and you're well on your way to building an appealing ‘Hook, Story, Offer’ framework that has your audience wanting more.

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