Branding is storytelling. The best way to engage someone with your brand is to tell them the story behind what you do. This can be hard, even counterintuitive work, because you often don’t get to tell all the statistics that make you look good, or how many offices you have, or how long you’ve been in business. What you do get to tell is that weird anecdote about the house fire that broke out down the street, or the morning you woke up covered in house paint, or the conversation you had at the cafe three hours before the presentation.
These kinds of anecdotes, when chosen well, do a much better job of ‘making a convert’ for your brand than any statistics, analytics, or bragging will ever do. The reason is because there is more power beyond words than within them. Words are abstract, so the smartest use of them points at meaning rather than contains it. This is the reason that novels are generally more interesting than phone books. Be brave! Tell your story!
The payoff – when you risk it all for a powerful story, and it falls on the right ears – those ears are connected to a mouth that will share the story with like-minds. Your idea, your business, begins to live in the realm of culture and relationship rather than number crunching business – which is where longevity comes from. The next time you have an opportunity to tell someone about your business, or your product – tell them something they’ll remember – a story.