Last weekend, I listened to the audiobook Greenlights by Matthew McConaughey. It surprised me. I went in thinking this story would be light-hearted and entertaining because the author is “that shirtless, date-night movie actor.” As the book unfolded, I discovered a spiritual man with insecurities like the rest of us with a fierce commitment to his career and family. McConaughey shared authentic stories filled with emotion that I found myself recounting to family members. He is a storyteller and stories are powerful because they attach feelings to messages. Businesses can use storytelling to bring their marketing to the next level. Here are three benefits to using storytelling in your marketing.
Stories humanize your business
Using storytelling, you can provide prospective clients with an introspective look at your business. A good example would be the “About” section of your website. This is your opportunity to share your personality and beliefs and transfer them to the minds of your audience.
“Sharing stories that demonstrate your passion and inspiration will humanize your business for potential clients.” says Courtney Birchmeier, editor-in-chief and content creator at Shoreline Creative, a creative studio offering innovative marketing solutions for niche brands. “People connect with people. There’s no better way to cultivate a lasting relationship with customers than letting them inside and allowing them to relate to the humans behind your brand.”
Stories validate your business
When people come across your business, they want to understand why they should do business with you. Storytelling can help you creatively communicate why you’re in business and the services you offer. Sharing stories from current and past customers in the form of testimonials lends authenticity and transparency to the services you provide. When potential customers hear real-life stories, it makes it easier for them to validate your credibility and distinguish your business from competitors.
Stories are motivational
Let’s face it, the main purpose of marketing is to get customers to participate with your brand. Storytelling helps you be relevant to your audience by demonstrating you understand what matters to them, what they strive for and how your offer helps them achieve their goal. Stories convey emotion and can involve all the senses. Good, truthful storytelling helps customers visualize themselves using your products and services. Sharing stories that describe the impacts customers will experience is much more effective than focusing on the features of your product.
Storytelling provides meaning, creates context and evokes a sense of purpose. Taking the time to develop your organization’s stories will make your brand more memorable to customers. Or, as Matthew McConaughey might say, adding storytelling to your marketing plan is “Alright, alright, alright!”