Connect To Consumers: Eight Tips For Crafting A Relatable Brand Narrative by Forbes – Entrepreneurs

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Research has shown that Millennial and Gen-Z consumers prefer to do business with companies that have a defined mission and distinct brand story. Today, to find success with consumers—particularly younger consumers—companies must forge connections through advertising, social media and meaningful content.

Yet, creating a brand story and mission isn’t as easy as combining buzzwords. To help you create a brand narrative that will appeal to your target audience, we asked industry experts from Young Entrepreneur Council to share their best tips for creating stories that draw people in.

Members of Young Entrepreneur Council offer tips to help businesses create a relatable brand story.

All photos courtesy of YEC members.

1. Keep Your Story Simple

One of the best ways to create a relatable brand story that young customers will connect with is to keep your company story and mission simple. The more complicated your story becomes, the less likely people are to follow it and connect with it. All good stories have a beginning, middle and end, so your company’s story should as well. Start with a problem. Add your company’s solution. Then, tell customers why they should get involved. GoPro is a great example. GoPro was started by Nick Woodman to solve a simple problem: There wasn’t a high-quality camera to capture surfers and action sports enthusiasts. He developed a waterproof camera to solve the problem. Today, GoPro encourages people to live life and share their adventures with a camera. Keep it simple: problem, solution, community. – Shaun Conrad, My Accounting Course

2. Dont Forget About Consistent Visuals

A story isn’t just about the words you choose or the overall message—it’s also about the visuals. If you want to create a relatable brand story, you need to be incorporating eye-catching images that resonate with your audience. Since most consumers are getting your content through mobile phones and tablets, visuals that are quick and easy to digest are very important. Use GIFs and short videos, along with shareable images, quotes and infographics. Be sure to create a brand style guide and give everyone on your team access to a digital or hard copy—this will ensure your brand stays consistent at all times. – Stephanie Wells, Formidable Forms

3. Don’t Try To Manufacture A Story

You don’t create a brand story, you tell your brand story. The harder you try to create a story, the more manufactured you look and the more unrelatable and disingenuous it appears. Your story should be a genuine representation of how your brand came into existence, answering questions like what you are trying to accomplish, what drives you to stay in business and what success looks like for you. Customers want to be able to relate to your mission. That starts with you answering what you relate to as a founder. Instead of trying to manufacture a story, ask yourself: What do you relate to? What are you passionate about day in and day out that keeps you working on your company? What is real to you? That will be real to your customers, and that’s what they’ll connect with. – Tim Nybo, Vincero Collective

4. Give Behind-The-Scenes Glimpses

The secret to effective storytelling is giving the customers a sneak peek into what goes on behind the scenes in the brands they follow—how the company culture is, what the employees do and what life within the organization is like. Utilization of social media platforms and other content marketing channels for communicating the “whys” and the “hows” of business processes brings out the human component and makes it easy for customers to connect and relate with your brand. Video is turning out to be the most engaging platform in the current times and should be leveraged to boost customer engagement. Strategize what the story is and how you would go about communicating it. Staying authentic is the key. – Rahul Varshneya, Benchpoint

5. Highlight The ‘Why’ Across Your Communications

The problem you are solving and your ability to articulate it are probably the most important factors being taken into account by customers and clients. Whether we are conscious of it or not, we are purpose-driven creatures. People want to know why they should buy your product or service over the myriad of alternatives. Younger generations have been more vocal about their desire for meaning in their purchasing decisions, but when it comes down to it, this is a universal sentiment. To start, make sure your “why” is manifested in some form across all communications, including your website, social media pages and marketing materials. If you’re not sure what your “why” is, consider the problem you are solving and the solution you are providing; I promise it’s somewhere in there. – Kelley WeaverMelrose PR

6. Share Content That People Actually Like

Know exactly who your target audience is and create content for them. This should not be something you think they like but something they actually want to read and will find interesting. You can start by checking which of your posts perform best. I bet these are the ones that are more personal and appeal to emotions or are really informative and educational pieces that bring people value. To create a truly relatable brand story, be authentic and bring value in every piece of content that you share. Always engage with your audience to see whether they like your content or not, and tailor your content to their needs and preferences. – Solomon Thimothy, OneIMS

7. Align With An Important Theme In Society

There are several very visible themes that have popped up in society over the last five years, and there will surely be more in the future. One such theme is sustainability; another is gender equality, etc. While I don’t recommend being political about anything you do, you can do it overtly by intertwining those concepts with your company mission. For instance, maybe highlight some of the women leaders on your team to align with the gender-equality theme, or focus on how your product sources from sustainability-focused suppliers if youre going for the sustainability theme. Being a relatable brand in this regard works by visibly incorporating societal themes into your product or company. – Andy Karuza, FenSens

8. Share Your Personal Journey

If you want your brand to stand out among the crowd, you need a story. Ideally, that story shares vulnerability, pain, loss and the ultimate win that expresses your company’s hero’s journey. If you had a hard past, share some of it and show how it shaped your company and the mission. We all like stories, because through a story we can identify and see ourselves. Your brand is more than just a logo and what you do, it’s also the deeper stuff—the things that showcase the humanness of your company. Don’t be afraid to pull back the curtain a bit and use that transparency to let people have a window into the people, the trials and challenges, and the stuff that also makes your brand like a good friend who can share what they’re made of and what got them there now. – David Ehrenberg, Early Growth Financial Services

April 24, 2019 at 01:28PM
https://www.forbes.com/sites/theyec/2019/04/24/connect-to-consumers-eight-tips-for-crafting-a-relatable-brand-narrative/
Forbes – Entrepreneurs
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