As humans, we naturally love stories. They engage us, allow us to express ideas and bring us together. From the times when cavemen sat around the fire and told stories until now, storytelling has always offered an effective way to transfer knowledge. But more importantly—they allow us to build connections.
Connection is a powerful tool in the business industry. When brands connect with their audience, they create a place where purchases will happen because people enjoy the brand, understand the brand and support the brand. This is where storytelling plays a major role.
Stories lead people to understand and trust more. When done correctly, consumers can be moved to take action. Keeping this in mind, brand storytelling has become one of the most crucial marketing assets for businesses.
Need some inspiration? Here are five companies that are killing it with brand-driven storytelling:
Zendesk, a customer service software company, recently launched a campaign that completely captured the attention of the marketing industry. For this campaign, Zendesk created a… fake story.
The brand created a fictitious band named Zendesk Alternative. The company did not hold back with content creation—building an entire website for the band and even shooting a video for its announcement. The idea behind the campaign was that the only group good enough to be labeled as an alternative to Zendesk would be a fading rock band named Zendesk Alternative. The story stuck out and grabbed the attention of the audience. The campaign brought a ton of traffic to the company’s actual site.
Cisco, known for its innovative network, cloud and cybersecurity systems, does a great job connecting with its customers. When selling networking technology, which most people think of as a foreign language, it is important to connect with your audience on a more personal level, creating something they can enjoy.
Cisco takes the humorous approach, and it works for them. Who doesn’t love a good laugh? Humor is used in their content strategy through multiple channels, including an ad where Cisco proposed a $250,000 router as a last-minute Valentine’s Day gift, or its “Circle Story” commercial where a family is shown living their day fully in a home where nearly everything is connected to the internet.
This approach works for the brand because it brings personality to something that is not typically considered fun.
3. Raytheon Technologies
Raytheon, an American aviation, space and defense manufacturing company, uses B2B marketing to interact with its customers. The company strategically uses its social media channels to discuss current issues related to global security and technology. Raytheon does this through comments, shares, posts and stories.
By interacting with their audience, Raytheon can connect with people on a more personal level and create a sense of trust. Their followers look forward to these discussions and have connected it to the brand’s identity.
Intel, an American technology company, takes a more traditional approach when it comes to brand storytelling—but it works. The brand focuses on its history and what it has done to make its products stand out among others.
Intel does its storytelling through its social media platforms, using a combination of powerful images, quotes and captions to illustrate the brand’s history.
In addition, Intel uses its social platforms to display its latest products and how they are being used in the world today. When used in combination with the company’s historical posts, Intel successfully paints a complete, customer-focused picture of its brand. This approach creates an environment in which people feel more connected on a personal level.
MailChimp is not your average email company, and wants to make sure you know it. To start, just look at the name. The brand’s entire marketing strategy has been focused on telling the story of how it is different.
When MailChimp was founded, the company decided that it wanted to be memorable and “un-boring.” The company paints this picture for the audience right off the bat with its colorful website and quirky social media channels.
Now that you’ve seen some ideas of how it is possible for B2B companies to use brand-driving storytelling successfully, it is time to shift your focus to your own marketing efforts. When your brand’s story is told effectively, customers come directly to your business without you having to chase them.
Remember—people are wired to love stories. In fact, as you hear a story unfold, your brain waves actually start to synchronize with those of the storyteller. In other words, the brain regions that process complex information are engaged. So, tell your story and keep your customer at the core of it.