An introduction to brand storytelling – Part 1

I’m sorry if this may come across as bad news for many business operators or entrepreneurs out there, but your customers don’t just buy your brand.

You don’t simply call yourself Apple or Coca-Cola and instantly become loved all over the world.

What people buy into is your story, and the more compelling and relatable it is, the higher the chances of business success.

What this means is that the best way to get people to buy into your story is to make storytelling a key part of your brand marketing.

Just think about it. There are millions of brands in the world, but why do we only know a handful of them?

Well, the reason is that their stories have impressed us to the point where they have a much greater influence on our mind and our emotions than lesser known brands.

The product you sell is just a part of your story. What you need to do is make your customers fall in love with your brand well before they even consider making that purchase.

Writing a story for your brand is called brand storytelling, and successful brand marketers have been utilising this technique of growing and promoting a brand through the clever use of words for many years.

Writing a really compelling brand story is not an easy task. What is important though is to know which aspects you need to take into consideration so as to make your story work for the brand itself.

So, in the first of a series of posts on brand storytelling, I’ve come up with a few points that I believe are important to consider.

Here’s the first two


1.       A brand story is not an ad.

This is an important one to remember right up front. To create a compelling brand story, you need to forget about selling, and instead shift your mindset to telling.

Every business has its own story to tell, and yours is not an exception. Your customers will associate this story with your brand, and it will become the key moment of connection with your audience.


2.       Questions to ask yourself

A good prompter to get started is to ask yourself the following question. What do you and your business do to make your customers’ lives better?

The answer to this question will be used for your brand story afterwards.

Then, dig a little deeper and come up with honest answers to the following questions

1.       What will be your customers’ association with your brand? It could be a day to day convenience product, or an occasional luxury, or even something only needed in an emergency. Understanding how they will associate with it is an important step.    

2.       What emotions should your brand cause them to experience? It may be excitement, comfort, reassurance, a feeling of safety, etc, etc. What this does here is start to form a connection between your product or service and your customer.

3.       What signals should your brand send? Your key task will then be to make people believe these signals.

4.       What words and language will characterize your brand better? This is when you start thinking about the above three points along with who your target audience is in order to come up with the most effective communication methods, language and wording.

This is just the beginning. The more you look into it, the more you’ll see that brand storytelling can become quite an involved process. However, when it’s done properly, the benefits to overall brand equity far outweigh the work involved.

I will be writing some further posts over the coming weeks that look into areas such as understanding the different aspects of a good story and how to be a good writer while keeping your marketer’s hat on at all times.

So, please stay tuned for more.

Author: Cameron McIver


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