Stories have been part of our fibre from the start.
Whether we’re talking about the start of our own lives (and the fairy tales our parents told us when we were young) or the start of humanity (when cavemen told stories by drawing on rocks).
Storytelling is the oldest means of transferring knowledge, educating, and making a connection with others.
The importance of storytelling in business
Today, we all suffer from information overload. Good storytelling can cut through the clutter, capture our fragmented attentions, engage us, and move us to action.
As marketers, we can harness the power of great storytelling to bring people together and take our audiences on a journey that inspires them and moves them to act.
6 Types of stories you can tell
If you pay attention, there are many types of stories to tell around your business. Here are just a few examples:
Tell your own story
Tell your customer’s story
- Introduce your customer as your story’s hero.
- Describe the problem they were facing.
- Outline the solution you provide
- Paint a picture of the results your customer obtained as a result
Check out my tips on how to write the perfect case study in 6 simple steps.
Tell your product story
A great story can help you drive sales. Craft a story around each of your products, the problem it solves and the results it delivers.
In this explainer video we created for Enthalpy, we make a case for the importance of successful onboarding before we delve into software’s features and benefits.
Share employee stories
If you’re looking to expand your team, showing off an outstanding company culture can be your best move. Senior management can rave about the company culture until the cows come home but nothing strikes a more authentic chord than hearing from the employees directly.
Apple’s corporate recruiting video is an excellent example.
Your customers may have interesting stories to tell around your product. And those stories can be more believable, coming from theme, than the narratives you put out yourself.
In fact, studies show that 50 percent of millennials trust user-generated content more than other media. Capitalizing on user-generated content can be as simple as sharing stories your customers post around your product, along with a hashtag you create for the occasion.
For a brilliant example by Freshly Picked Baby Moccassins, just search Instagram with the #fpmoccmemories hashtag.
Use data to tell a compelling story
Let’s face it, we’re not all data scientists. You may be sitting on a goldmine of data that is interesting to you … but will make your audience’s eyes roll back into their heads. There’s an art to storytelling with data. Try your hand at telling a good story with data:
- With a whiteboard video like this one about the modern Canadian family
- With an infographic (like this one about the state of female entrepreneurship)
- With an impactful financial presentation
Choosing the right medium for telling your story
In business and marketing, you have a number of different options for telling a captivating story, including:
Try not to default to the same content type without asking yourself a few key questions, such as:
Which formats does your audience prefer?
Do your id