Crafting the corporate story
People love stories; they’re how we’ve expressed ourselves and communicated with each other since the beginning of human history. Corporate storytelling is using stories to communicate what your company does and what it values—and it’s an important tool for building and maintaining connections with potential customers. Here are a few tips for developing your brand’s story:
- Find your audience. A good storyteller can change and adjust stories for different audiences. Who are you telling your story to? Figure out the kind of narratives that will resonate with your customers. What are their wants, goals, desires? What’s the benefit that you can offer them?
- Show, don’t tell. When people think about stories, they often think about text. While your corporate story should include some words and sentences, think about the bigger picture. If all the text on your site disappeared, what impression would a visitor be left with?
- Simplicity is key. Even huge brands like Google, Apple, and Amazon have a simple core message; their corporate stories tell consumers what problems their company is trying to solve and how they can help solve them. Don’t muddle your message with too much fluff.
- Have a hero. Creating a corporate story is about making an image for your brand. Find someone to personify that brand. People relate to other people, and if you can find one—whether it’s an ideal customer, a hardworking founder, or someone else entirely—you have an in.
- Make people feel. Stories are effective because they incite emotion, and while they can satisfy our need for entertainment, they go beyond that by telling us about our culture and values. A good story makes people empathize, and if you can make people feel for you, you can get them on your side.
- Don’t just write a company history. Save your highlight reel for later. The important first impression is based on feelings, not on a list of your accomplishments. Make sure that your corporate story isn’t an end point, but rather a path to continuation.