3 Reasons to Use Storytelling in Your Content Marketing

Jen Saunders

When brands are able to reveal a clear, human energy to their identity and products, they are presenting an identity that people will better relate to. Today’s buyers are demanding; they not only want superior products that meet their needs, but they enjoy products that tell a story. For example, after Nike launched their famous “Just Do It” campaign, the company went from controlling 18% of the north American sport shoe sales to 43% (from $877 million to 9.2 billion from 1988 to 1998).  

“Just Do It” came with micro stories about athletes in training to achieve their dreams, and self-reflections made by pro athletes who were told as children they would never go pro, and other stories that made many of us look deep inside ourselves. When this message left its calling card on the forefront of our psyches, many of us found motivation through the branded message Nike was presenting, and the rest is history.

You don’t have to be a mega corporation to tell a story that moves people and motivates them to buy your products. You can be a mom and pop pizza shop on Main Street USA and still tell an amazing story that people will connect with and convert into loyal customers.

Your website content is the bridge existing between you and your buyers. If you want them to take that first step, cross, and make a purchase you first need to give them a reason to put their foot forward. Using storytelling in your content marketing strategy will likely help you achieve this, and here are just four reasons to try.

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Storytelling Helps Buyers Relate to Your Products

One of the common drawbacks expressed by online buyers is “I can’t touch it before I buy it”. Storytelling helps move buyers past this obstacle by creating an experience where they can easily engage the product and better determine how it meets their needs. A good narrative will include common industry-related problems or popular challenges expressed by current and past customers, and show how the product or service offers the ultimate solution.

Storytelling Works Well With the Inbound Marketing Methodology

If you work with an inbound marketing agency to create workflows that lead multiple audience segments to your products, injecting storytelling into your content marketing bucket would be highly useful. The methodology itself relies on the buyer’s journey; their awareness level of your product and how it relates to their needs. By crafting content that mirrors the buyer’s journey stage with the part of a story showcasing the life of a buyer attempting to resolve a problem by purchasing the product at hand, you can add an extra layer of humanity and relatability to the strategy as a whole.

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Storytelling Helps Others Understand Your Brand

For example’s sake, I am going to plug one of my favorite brands. They are not widely known, but this company is growing in popularity within the scuba diving and fishing community: Shark Zen creates high-quality t-shirts that feature minimalist designs of various marine life by artist Billy Walsh. Their content defines their branded voice as one that cares deeply for the ocean environment, the experience we have when entering its world, and how our “inner shark” relates to the zen-like experience we have when scuba diving, and living out a typical day.

There are thousands of scuba diving apparel companies, but until I encountered Shark Zen, not a single brand stirred my pulse or proved to be memorable. Why? Because all of these companies seemed to be a slight variation of the same mold. Storytelling can help others understand your brand’s unique story, mission, and aura. Your causes, passion, and story can all be reflected from your products if you use storytelling in your content marketing strategy. Stand out from the competition by creating memorable experiences with those engaging your brand for the first, second or 100th time.

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About
Jen Saunders is the Director of SEO for WEBITMD bringing more than 15 years of search marketing experience. She spent 13 years in Europe earning her PhD while looking at lots of old neat stuff. Jen enjoys simple things, like trees, sunrises, and the delicate lull of a 16th century harpsichord. Jen enjoys meditating and studies Buddhism. She is a certified master scuba diver, dolls make her nervous, and she enjoys craft beer. Jen has two cats, Chairman Thaddeus Whiskers and Lord Joffrey Gaius Pitty-Paws. They are her heirs.


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