Storytelling: an effective marketing tool

What is storytelling and how does it relate to marketing? Why is knowledge of the storytelling structure useful for the development of the company? In this article, we will fully cover each of these topics, as well as teach you how to write scripts for product promotion. Happy reading!

Storytelling is a marketing tool, but compared to others, it has a little more nuance to use. However, these nuances greatly affect the effectiveness of the company’s promotion, so we decided to figure it out and find out why it is worth using storytelling.

The concept of “storytelling” comes from a combination of two English words: “story” – a story and “tell” – to tell. It turns out that storytelling is a genre of writing, in which the main characters and the plot are present. Specifically, the latter distinguishes it from the usual reasoning and description.

In marketing, storytelling is used to convey an idea to an audience by enticing a potential buyer into a story. In this way, you can express any thought, endearing the target audience to yourself and answering questions as the plot develops.

Related material: Storytelling and other promotion tools in times of crisis

Сторителлинг: эффективный инструмент маркетинга

Company development: on the effectiveness of storytelling

The advantage of texts written in the genre of storytelling is that they can be used to illustrate problems in an accessible way, to tell about solutions and the necessary tools. As in reading literary works, if the plot and the characters are worked out coolly, then the reader begins to empathize, try on their qualities for himself and think about what he would do in this situation. This allows the brand to get closer to customers, improve communication and increase trust.

Bright emotions, plot twists and non-planar characters are more attractive than loud advertising slogans and catchy banners. This is the reason for the popularity of storytelling in marketing.

How to visually convey meaning to your audience using storytelling

Companies from different industries use storytelling to increase audience loyalty. Below are five examples of how a story can be told:

  • Company or brand history.
  • A book or documentary about the journey of becoming a company will help expand your audience and attract attention. Surely those of you who have watched The Founder and others have felt closer to the company than following a brand on social media.

  • A story about the development of a specific product.
  • Involve your audience in the process of developing a new product or service. Explain why this is important to the company and how it will help customers. Seeing everything with their own eyes, people will understand that you can be trusted.

  • Correct values.
  • It is not necessary to regularly remind you that your product is cheaper than competitors and what advantages it brings. It is better to tell potential customers what they will get useful by contacting you. Let people buy products based on quality, not to save money.

    Use a variety of techniques to develop a story about your values ​​and ideas: show how your products are impressing customers, focus on positive emotions.

  • Answers to questions.
  • The FAQ section is popular with customers. Clear and structured information entices the user to learn more about the product. However, this block can be made more original and thus more attractive by giving answers to questions in the form of stories with heroes.

  • Company development.
  • Share the life of the company by highlighting the success and joyful stories of employees. The well-developed heroes also get a response from buyers, but the life of ordinary people is closer.

Storytelling cases can be found everywhere, there are many tricks, but how to properly handle them? By the way, you can also use a storytelling tool in case studies.

Case study: How we fought negative reviews about the furniture factory

Marketing: How To Use Storytelling Properly

The main thing in storytelling is to correctly package an idea into a concise shell. Think about the setting for a company story, what characters are needed, and why. Do not forget that the text should contain the forces of good (heroes) and evil (client problems), ways to fight evil, battle and victory, after which a conclusion should follow. Sometimes the ways to fight evil or can be separate qualities of the heroes, and not specific characters or actions.

Let’s simplify the task and provide examples of possible scenarios that you can use.

Сторителлинг: эффективный инструмент маркетинга

Storytelling Scripts

Plot is the basis for building a story. Let’s take a look at those that can serve as a suitable wrapper for product promotion.

  • Popular storytelling scenario battle: the classic story of the victory of good over evil, so loved by the general public.
  • The next scenario is a quest in which the heroes find a solution with the help of ingenuity or exceptional skills. This is where the product can act as a reward for the characters.
  • Journey is a story about the adventures of the protagonist, during which he gains new abilities, finds friends and enemies, and eventually gets to the goal, becoming happy.
  • Transformation is like a journey, but instead of a thorny path, the hero reaches the goal with the help of cunning, help or luck.
  • Becoming is a story of spiritual growth. Here the hero does not struggle with external problems, but tries to cope with internal problems. It is important to show that the hero is like the reader and also learns to cope with the experience.
  • Defeat – stories about characters who fail can also bring the company and the target audience closer together. Readers will find a part of themselves in the hero, because he, like everyone else, can go through difficult times and not find the strength to cope with what is happening.

Сторителлинг: эффективный инструмент маркетинга

Related material: How to write cases: why does a business need cases and what are the marketing benefits of them?

Sorted out the scripts. However, this is not enough to master storytelling. Let’s move on to the next point and talk about text structures.

Text structures: types

Immediately, we note that the correctly selected structure of the text also makes it easier for readers to understand the story. Therefore, do not neglect it.

There are two popular storytelling frameworks:

  • Three acts.
  • The story consists of an introduction, a development of events and a denouement. There is a more difficult option, which contains five acts: the introduction, the development of events, the peak of the story, the fading and the denouement.

    Any of these structures can be made more complex by adding a parallel line of events with additional characters or action times.

  • Before and After.
  • History, no development of events: the initial situation and the result of its resolution are shown here. This structure can be turned upside down and scripted for Hollywood: show the peak of the plot at the beginning, and then tell how the characters came to that turn.

Like other marketing tools, storytelling has advantages and disadvantages, which can be found below.

Storytelling: pros and cons

Storytelling is universal, which cannot be a disadvantage. It can be applied in a wide range of areas, solving different problems. The original stories are easy to remember and associate with the creators, and inspires confidence. When properly presented, storytelling in marketing will not be perceived as advertising.

The only drawback of storytelling is complexity. To create a working story that leads your audience and builds loyalty, you need to try and follow the rules.

To write a marketing story, follow these guidelines:

  • Be clear about the message you want to convey.
  • Write a well-thought-out and engaging script.
  • Choose a place and time for the story, characters, main elements.
  • Work on the text structure for the plot.

Using the knowledge gained, you can promote the product and increase the trust of the target audience. We hope that you will use the information received, and if you want to become a hero of storytelling, but do not know where to start, please contact us → “Integrated Marketing”.

Author: Exiterra.com Digital Agency

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