You’ve heard that, to be a successful marketer today, touting product features and benefits simply won’t cut it, you have to tell a “brand story.”
SYMPTOM: But here’s a little secret. Many B2B marketers are unsure how to craft a brand story. And frankly, they’re wondering how their company will benefit from this exercise. Let’s talk about it.
A powerful brand story brings clarity to your employees and stakeholders. It gives them a sense of pride and belonging and it can inspire your customers. Those things alone make it worth the effort. But a well-crafted brand story can also help you generate qualified leads and make more money.
In an earlier video, I talked about how every good brand story has three key elements:
- What we do - explained quickly and concisely
- How we do it better - this is the stuff that separates you from your competitors
- Why it matters - how customers’ lives have been improved
This is a great start but it still lacks the emotion you’ll need to get the attention your brand deserves. Stories that resonate have tension between “The Good Guys” (that’s you) and “The Bad Guys” (that’s your competitors).
The next step is to identify the bad guys and the things they do that cause their customers pain. This can be tricky because these pain points might be industry-wide and considered an accepted way of life, much like the way people put up with expensive, unreliable and unfriendly taxi services until Lyft and Uber said, “Wait a minute, it doesn’t have to be this way.” Your main competitor may be pushing outdated or shoddy products. Another may make great products but their prices are prohibitive. Others may be “going through the motions” and have become dispassionate about their industry or the products they sell. Still others exaggerate the truth or make promises they don’t keep. And of course, every industry has player that’s so big they get away with treating their customers like a number.
Now, your brand may be doing everything right, but you’ll need to build your brand story around a compelling focal point, one that counters what the bad guys are doing and answers a deep customer need. Let’s say your focal point is a product innovation that brings a whole new level of reliability.
How do you turn “innovation and reliability” into a lead-generating, moneymaking brand story? First, target specific competitors who are causing the pain points of outdated products and unreliability. This is your low-hanging fruit where you can put a dent in their market share and convert their customers into your customers. Hey, their customers probably know the products they are buying are outdated and unreliable but they haven’t pursued another vendor because the pain isn’t bad enough, or they’re simply unaware that there’s a better alternative.
Remember, this is your brand story so don’t spend your prospects’ precious time badmouthing your competition. Instead, shine a light on your brand’s commitment to innovation and reliability. Be clear that your products perform at the highest level. They’re accurate and reliable so they run longer and require fewer replacements or service, meaning your customers will experiences fewer interruptions. From there, you can expand your brand story beyond products to innovative and reliable customer service, training, logistics, field support and so on. Successful brand stories aren’t just told…they’re LIVED, and they impact every customer interaction.
TREATMENT: So, craft a brand story that sets your brand apart, excites your employees and inspires your customers. But take it further. Win market share by targeting your competitors’ customers and showing them a better way.
Contact a brand therapist for ways to craft a powerful brand story that will help you generate qualified leads and make more money. To receive notification when we add a new video that will help you gain more traction from your marketing efforts, subscribe to our YouTube channel.