Using Corporate Storytelling to Grow Your Small Business

Buzzwords like “content marketing” and “storytelling” aren’t new. But as consumers evolve how they like to engage, interact with, and hear from brands, marketing teams are having to pivot their approach.

Storytelling is a great way to enhance your brand, tell its story, and create and maintain stronger relationships with your customers through engaging content. Business stories can help you connect with consumers on a deeper level without using advertising or salesy language, showing them why your business is different, how you can help them, and why they should buy from you.

In order to have an effective corporate storytelling strategy, it’s important to know what corporate storytelling even is, its benefits, and tips for using it to grow your business. Read on to learn more.

What is Corporate Storytelling?

Corporate storytelling is about sharing your brand, employees, customers, and advocates through narrative and connection. It connects your audience to your brand, and deeper connections help foster brand loyalty, making your company more memorable and relatable. This ultimately helps you stand out from the crowd as the go-to in your community.

Every brand has a story to tell, whether it’s about values, people, history, or the journey that led you to where you are. These stories can be told in articles, social media posts, videos, emails, or other types of content. They help define your brand while building emotional connections with consumers.

Corporate storytelling is not advertising or sales, though it should be part of your marketing strategy:

  • Inject real-life, human experience into your engagement efforts.
  • Connect on a deeper level to the message you’re trying to convey.
  • Engage with your audience, both prospects and existing customers.
  • Build emotional connections.
  • Don’t directly promote your products/services, but instead incorporate the “why” people should care.

Benefits to Corporate Storytelling

There are numerous benefits to developing and executing a storytelling strategy for your business. For example, storytelling can help instill a sense of purpose and meaning into what your business does. This helps your prospects and customers connect with you. There are strong, profitable links between empathy and connection with companies and consumers – they would rather invest in a human than a company, and storytelling can do this.

It also offers your business a competitive advantage. Regardless of whether your product or service is better than the competition, helping consumers connect with your brand through storytelling can help differentiate you in the market, therefore driving increased profits.

Storytelling can help you emotionally connect with prospects and consumers, which helps create brand loyalty. It offers a venue to communicate your values and beliefs as a brand, while tapping into emotions, connecting, and helping consumers believe in your brand as a trustworthy, credible resource.

From a revenue perspective, storytelling gives you an opportunity to talk about and promote your brand without sounding like a sales pitch and being too pushy. It helps the audience make sense of what you have to offer and makes you more memorable by capturing their attention longer.

Finally, it creates a better understanding of your business, therefore building stronger connections between consumers and your brand, leading to increased sales and brand loyalty.

Tips for Using Storytelling to Grow Your Business

Corporate storytelling is important, but it’s not always easy to think about your brand in this way. Here are some tips to help get you started:

Follow the 5Cs of Storytelling

  1. Circumstance: Provides context for the story, sets the scene, and helps the audience understand the narrative.
  2. Curiosity: Draw their attention and keep them engaged.
  3. Characters: The story should be relatable, human, and authentic.
  4. Conversation: Be conversational and showcase your brand’s personality through tone and language, but avoid corporate slang and sales pitches.
  5. Conflict: Share the problem your characters face and how they fixed it.

Content Should Entice, Engage, and Enthrall

Your audience won’t read your story unless it’s interesting and grabs their attention. Attract readers with a great headline or relevant or strong images. Tell stories about interesting topics or topics people want to learn or know about. Be sure you’re offering value, solving a problem, teaching them something, or entertaining.

Know what motivates and drives your customers. Understand what questions and problems they have and how you can solve them with your products/services. What makes them tick? What do they care about? Then, figure out how your brand’s story can fit into that.

The content should also be produced and executed well. This doesn’t necessarily mean you have to go out and hire a full editorial and creative team, but it should be appear professionally created. A digital marketing company can help take this off your desk and generate quality content that communicates your brand’s story and expertise in your field.

Share Your Brand’s Story

This goes beyond the “About Us” page on your website. Instead, take information like how and why your company got started, its mission, information about the team, and how consumers can get involved, and create a story around it. This humanizes your brand, provides context, and enforces its meaning. Keep the content professional, but avoid stuffy. It should be authentic and feel personal.

Connect with Consumer Desires

What do you customers aspire to do or be? You can tell a story reflecting that. Empower and enable your customers through words and prove their dreams can become a reality. Tap into their interests. Use your content to show you really connect with and understand them.

Create Suspense

You can also take the route of suspense. Pique their interest or curiosity and entice them to want to learn more. For example, create episodic content or social media teasers to drive back to the company website.

Demonstrate Empathy

It’s important to show you understand and care about your audience’s feelings and thoughts. Connect with those feelings on a deeper level through your content. Be relatable, not just by talking about how you’re relatable, but why.

Experiment with Different Formats

Content comes in many forms and can be shared on a variety of platforms, so experiment with what works best for your brand and audience. Start by creating different types, like articles, videos, images, infographics, audio clips, white pages, webinars, or others.

Then, think about how that content can be shared on different channels, such as your website, social media, email, and more. For example, an article can be turned into a video and an audio clip, or an infographic can be turned into an article.

Figure out how your audience connects with you and meet them there. And, as you find out if/where content works or doesn’t work, adjust the strategy. Do this through careful data and audience analysis on a regular basis. Your digital marketing team can help you collect and analyze this data to sharpen your strategy using all of the tools available.

Make Talking to Your Customers a Habit

It’s not enough to post on social media a handful of times or write an article once every few months. Talk to your customers through storytelling on a regular, consistent basis. Offer new content routinely to keep them engaged and build that relationship. Otherwise, they will quickly lose interest and move on to the next brand that offers what they are looking for.

Contact Dragonfly Digital Marketing

If you want to develop a corporate storytelling strategy for your business, contact Dragonfly Digital Marketing. We can help you build an immersive, engaging backstory for your brand that is communicated across your entire digital presence. Call (800) 636-0347.

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