As the great Bob Dylan once said, "The times they are a-changin'." This holds true even to the marketing world, where fresh challenges continue to assault the industry and force companies to rethink their selling strategies.
Today's consumers are a skeptical bunch. If they feel like they're on the receiving end of a played-out sales pitch, they're highly unlikely to stick around to learn what you're selling, let alone buy the product. What's a business to do in situations like these?
Enter the storyteller. In an age where social media has created more isolation than meaningful relationships, people are starting to crave connection. Your product's success is no longer determined solely by its quality or uniqueness – it's determined by the story behind it.
Consumers want to know about the people who created it and the meaning of the product itself. They want to hear astoryof overcoming the odds, of following in the footsteps of forefathers, of preserving or furthering a culture. When the consumer feels an emotional connection to the product as well as the producers, there's a much greater chance that you'll secure their business and their loyalty.
Whether you're a startup trying to gain a footing or an established company looking to re-brand, focus on your story. Give your potential clients specific answers to the questions that matter to them. For instance:
- Tell the story of who started your company, and how they realized their dream. Tell about obstacles they overcame to get to where they are. A personal journey forms a strong bond between individuals, and this holds true in a business-customer relationship.
- Give an understanding of the product – its connection to the past, its current benefits, and where it can take the consumer in the future.
- Create an environment where the consumer feels connected not just to the makers and the product, but to the rest of society. Make it a worldwide phenomenon. Let your clientele know what you're doing to create a cleaner environment, eliminate child slavery, feed the impoverished, or whatever your company's passion may be.
Your company's brand story is a crucial aspect of your marketing campaign, as it reveals who you are and what you stand for. When you create an emotional tie to your product, you gain a loyal customer base and generate a unique voice that sets you apart in a highly competitive market.
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