Your Brand Is Your Story, But…
It’s not the story you tell about yourself—it’s the story the marketplace tells about you. In fact, it’s the compilation, the sum, of all the stories that your customers and competitors tell about you. Ultimately, your brand is your reputation. That’s why so many brand efforts fail: they portray the brand as it sees itself, not as others see it.
Greg Smith’s approach to “narrative branding” takes three factors seriously:
- Good storytelling technique, including all the classic elements (protagonist, antagonist, conflict, plotting, point-of-view, etc.)
- The position of the brand in the mind and, more importantly, the imagination of the consumer
- Proactive methods of shifting the existing narrative and framing the brand within the marketplace
Invite Greg to speak to your group or consult with your team about how to build your brand by shifting the narrative and telling a more compelling story.
Listen to Your Audience
Your brand isn’t what you say about yourself—it’s what others say about your. This means that brand management isn’t storytelling in a vacuum. Your audiences think and feel, they start and respond to rumors, they evolve, and they respond to changes in the marketplace or the actions of your competitors. If you’re developing or managing your brand by talking about what matters to you, not what matters to them, the chances that your branding will connect drop quickly. Your job isn’t so much to tell a story but to shape it.
So, how do you know what stories are being told about your brand? You listen. You talk to your customers—current, former, and potential. You listen to the market by auditing competing brands. You mind map your leadership, because your team knows more collectively than any one member does individually. Good brand development responds to the environment rather than imposing a message onto it.
Greg will work with your team to develop and execute a discovery process that captures the insights you need to develop your brand shrewdly and organically.
Communication Isn’t Just Verbal
It’s easy to get caught up in brand messaging, to articulate features, benefits, and other selling points in a deliverable script. But that ignores the reality that most human communication is nonverbal. Messaging is critical, but it’s not sufficient to capture attention and captivate an audience, or to engage customers at a visceral level.
A chef knows that a great meal is more than just calories or even ingredients. It’s the arrangement of those ingredients, and how they are juxtapositioned and presented, that elevates cooking to culinary art, much less an experience for the diner. All the senses are involved in attracting and creating meaningful dining experiences.
Your brand narrative isn’t told only with words, but with visual imagery, with customers experiences, and through events and interactions that engage not only the mind but the emotions, and even the heart.
Invite Greg to speak to your group or consult with your team about how to build your brand through multisensory experiences.