If you Google “storytelling for business”, you’ll find pages and pages of articles, blogs and classes related to this topic. And that makes sense because storytelling goes back eons. People have been sharing stories with one another as long as we’ve been around. We connect through stories.
Far from being the latest marketing trend, telling your company’s stories can help you form stronger connections with your customers and employees which can, ultimately, result in a better bottom line.
Here are five tips to keep in mind as you effectively craft the stories of your company and your products.
FOCUS ON PEOPLE AND EMOTIONS
People don’t care about faceless companies. People care about people. So, when you’re narrating your company’s story, be sure to focus on the human and emotional sides of your org. What does it stand for? How was it founded? What challenges has it overcome? What did you learn? Are there behind-the-scenes stories about your products? Build tension and drama so people will engage with your stories.
DON’T OVEREMBELLISH (OR LIE!)
Establish credibility with your audiences by sticking to the facts. Be authentic. If you walked through five feet of snow on Christmas Eve to deliver an order, own that story and tell it with humility. If that didn’t happen, don’t make it up. Simple, memorable and truthful stories that are free of marketing and PR spin have the most impact.
Be strategic in your business storytelling. Don’t fall into the trap about it being all about you or a yawn-inducing product feature. Remember, your audience wants to discover “what’s in it for me?”. If you’re offering a t-shirt with UPF sun protection, state that fact. But then follow up and talk about how the shirt will allow the wearer to have more fun at the beach or by the pool.
TELL STORIES ACROSS ALL MEDIUMS
Share stories with your audiences through the various touchpoints available to you. Use your website, print materials, emails, social media posts, hold messages, flyers, in-person presentations and more to tell your stories. Just make sure the stories are consistent across all platforms. Inconsistency leads to doubt and confusion—and that’s not good for effective business storytelling.
REPEAT, REPEAT, REPEAT
Tell your stories often. That way they’ll become engrained in your company culture and in the minds of your customers. Your company and your reputation are slowly built on the foundation of your stories. Practicing and repeating your stories will help you become a more effective salesperson, too.
THE SANMAR STORY
SanMar has been in business for almost 50 years, and we have plenty of stories to share. Product stories are in our catalogs, online descriptions and here at SanMar U. We’re also telling our stories on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.