How to Tell the Story of Your Brand

Traditional advertising has never been more ubiquitous. From the billboards commuters pass on their highway journeys to the bus wraps city dwellers walk by every day, marketing messages are everywhere.

The onslaught continues every time we go online. From banner ads to pop-ups, those enticements to buy are everywhere we turn. The more advertising becomes an integral part of daily life, the more the messages fade into the background.

If you want to break through the clutter and avoid the advertising overload, try telling the story of your brand instead.

Over the years, jaded consumers have come to ignore or be suspicious of traditional advertising messages. Even so, those same consumers still love a good story, and making the story of your brand a compelling one could be your key to success.

So how do you tell the story of your brand? Many business owners have never thought about this before, so it helps to take a step back and start at the beginning. Every great story starts with a great hook, so think about the factors that caused you to start your business in the first place. Maybe you identified an unmet need or recognized an underserved market niche. Maybe the origin of your business stemmed from a personal frustration or a unique experience. Whatever that origin story is, it is the perfect starting point for the story of your brand.

No matter how successful your business is now, chances are you did not do it alone. Be sure to acknowledge the contributions of the mentors, partners, investors and visionaries who helped you turn your dream of a business and a brand into a successful reality.

If your brand features a distinctive logo, your story can include tales of its creation. Many people wonder where those iconic brands came from, from the Nike swoosh to the famous McDonalds golden arches. Your brand and logo may not be as easily recognizable as those two examples, so use your story to tell the tale.

The name of your company plays a big role in the story of your brand, so talk about how the name was chosen, what it means to you and what it has come to symbolize for your customers. It is clear that brand names can have one meaning for the company founders and a different meaning for customers, so play up that conflict when telling the compelling story of your brand.

How many Google users know that the term actually refers to an almost incomprehensibly large number, or that the original Amazons were large, powerful women? The stories behind those iconic names are fascinating in themselves, and they can play a starring role in your own brand identity and the story you tell.

Do not avoid conflict as you tell the story of your brand. Every story needs a touch of drama, and chances are your own rise has not been conflict-free. You do not need to overdramatize what happened or stray from the truth; just talk openly and honestly about the history of your company and the challenges you overcome to be where you are today.

 You may not think that the story of your brand is that interesting, or that consumers will find it compelling. But once you start to tell the tale, you will see just how fascinating, how unusual and how personal the story of your brand really is. It will also engage your customers on a personal level and make your brand stand out in a crowded market.