Everyone has a story.
That sounds generic, right? It looks like something you’d see on an inspirational Instagram post, followed by a 400-word rant about someone finding themselves through CrossFit.
Take a minute to let that sink in, though. Your story is everything that has led up to this very moment of you staring at your phone or computer screen reading this blog post. You’re likely an entrepreneur or small business owner, and you’re searching for insight after having a positive experience with The Social Brand.
In your life, there are some spaces where you’re allowed to make the decisions of the direction you’ll take, but most of the time you’re not. Life happens to you, and your response becomes the next chapter of your story.
We love novels and movies for this same reason. Our hero faces a circumstance he or she didn’t choose in order to overcome a challenge in their world and in themselves. We connect because we see ourselves on the page or on the screen.
The same is true in your business, with one colossal difference.
You get to tell the story.
You decide how you’ll guide your clients to success. You choose how the service you offer will be the difference-maker in the lives of your customers. You get to be the author and decide how the story ends.
The best marketers in the world know this and use it to grow their businesses into iconic brands. It’s nonsensical to wear a Nike swoosh on your t-shirt, giving free advertising to a mega-company like it’s a nonprofit and you’re raising awareness. But Nike, like other great businesses, knows how to make an emotional connection through the story and message it tells. On its website today, the company’s latest marketing push literally says, “Every Air Max has a story; this is where to find yours.”
The method for this is simple. Think of the foundations you began with when you started your business. You had a clear vision, a target client base, and a direction you wanted to go. You know what you’re offering is valuable to customers who only need to see the difference your product or service will make.
Your potential clients, however, are busy and have no real incentive to hear what you have to say. Digital Marketing experts estimate that most Americans are exposed to around 4,000 to 10,000 advertisements per day. You’ve got so many commercials in your face it all just becomes white noise without you even knowing it.
How can you possibly stand out? Engage your audience in a clear, simple, compelling story where they get to play the lead role.
These are the keys to telling a story worth hearing, and these are the keys to keep your advertising from joining the rest of the chatter going on around us. If your marketing can clearly and simply compel your consumer to allow you to guide them to become the hero of the own story, then you’ve got an audience ready to listen.
Victory Harbin is one of the owners of The Social Brand and is a content strategist. She helps people be smart about using content to get the best results to grow their business.