What’s the Story?
Shared by Another Idea from HEILBrice Thursday, October 15, 2009

We are a species made up of storytellers. Each one of us are storytellers. We tell stories to our friends, family, co-workers, strangers, pets, and ourselves. At the end of the work day a question I often ask my friends is, “What did you do today?” I am asking them to tell me a story.

Storytelling might be the most important characteristic that sets us apart from all other beings, which is why we take storytelling so seriously here at HEILBrice.

Think about the stories you tell that are the most enjoyable. We all love to tell stories that include exotic locations, interesting characters, and unique circumstances. We don’t like to tell stories or listen to ones about the normal and mundane. We like stories that have an element to them that is different than the expected.

Before we begin work on a new campaign or positioning a brand, we often spend a serious amount of time talking about the story. What’s the story to be told? We look closely at the company, the brand, the products, the targets, and the marketplace to identify the most compelling story.

Each brand has a story to tell. It might be a story that takes place long ago, one that is comical, exciting, dramatic, or heartwarming. A story that is captivating will generate long-term interest with your target and will give you the opportunity to speak more frequently and more effectively to them. A flashy campaign without a good story might work for the short-term, but without substance, your brand is going to get lost in the mix of all the other short-lived flashy campaigns.

Think for a minute about some of the most well known brands: Disney, Gatorade, Levi’s, Coca-Cola, Ford – All have a great story to tell and while they may not all be actively telling that story daily, it does not take much digging to find it.

What is your story? What do you personally say when others ask you what your company does? Do you simple reply that you sell things? Maybe you haven’t thought about this before, but if you’re interested in bulding brand equity, a story is a great place to start. A good story with lend itself to all sorts of marketing tactics and will inspire creative executions that will reflect well on your company. Focus the plot around what makes your brand different from others. Don’t forget that conflict always helps. Identify the hero, and introduce the villian. Now you have the beginnings of a story – Who knows, maybe it will be the next one to be told over and over, generation after generation.