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Good Examples of Brand Storytelling

Successful brands know how to use stories to clarify their message and they know that brand storytelling is a very powerful marketing tool.

Let’s look at some of the best examples of interesting brand stories.

Why stories?

  • Because story is the greatest weapon we have to combat noise.
  • Because it organizes information in such a way that people are compelled to listen.
  • Because it’s the most powerful tool in the world to compel a human brain.

To put it simply:

Story in marketing is a filter that allows us to simplify the message.

So that people can see us, hear us, and understand.

Telling stories make it easy for us to understand the world.

They are the only way we know to spread an idea.

But marketers didn’t invent storytelling — they just perfected it.

Whether you run a small company or a big corporation, confusing your customers is costing you money.

How many people are buying from your competition because they’ve communicated more clearly than you have?

How long will you last if you keep talking about aspects of your products that customers don’t care about?

Things can be different — to clarify your brand message you need a formula.

This formula needs to organize your thinking, reduce your marketing effort, obliterate confusion, terrify the competition, and finally get your businesses growing!

So here’s the formula — here’s nearly every story you see or hear in a nutshell:

A hero who wants something encounters a problem before they can get it.

At the peak of their despair, a guide steps into their lives, gives them a plan, and calls them to action.

That action helps them avoid failure and ends in a success — that results in the hero’s transformation.

First, let’s look at some of the famous brands and the stories they tell.

And then I will explain how to tell a compelling story that resonates with your audience.

Good Examples of Brand Storytelling:

  1. Apple
  2. Starbucks
  3. Tesla
  4. Nike
  5. Rolex

1. Apple

Apple grew much larger only after Steve Jobs began filtering his message through the lens of story.

Apple tells a story that makes their customer a hero, a creative individual who thinks differently.

Transformation in his thinking happened after working with (and partially creating) the genius storytelling factory that is Pixar.

When Jobs came back to Apple after being surrounded by professional storytellers, he realized story was everything.

Apple became customer-centric, compelling, and clear in their communication.

The first campaign he released went from nine pages in the New York Times to just two words on billboards all over America: Think Different.

When Apple began filtering their communication to make it simple and relevant, they actually stopped featuring computers in most of their advertising.

Instead, they understood their customers were all living, breathing heroes, and they tapped into their stories.

2. Starbucks

Starbucks exploded by not just offering customers a cup of coffee but by giving them a comfortable, sophisticated environment to relax.

Starbucks tells a story that makes their customers feel more sophisticated and enthusiastic about their life.

Starbucks also offers a place for people to meet in which they could experience affiliation and belonging.

The brand changed American culture from hanging out in diners and bars to hanging out in a local, Italian-style coffee shop.

Starbucks took a product that Americans were used to paying fifty cents for and were able to charge three or four dollars per cup.

How? Because their understood how their customers wanted to feel.

Their customers are willing to pay more for coffee because they sense greater value with each cup.

3. Tesla

When the Tesla Model S was launched, its primary function was to tell a story that, for a lot of luxury car neophiliacs, would break their current car.

Tesla positions its customers as early adopters and tech geeks who are audacious and care about the environment.

Tesla tells a story that breaks the luxury car owner’s story on many levels including the performance.

Break it in the sense that it wasn’t fun to own a luxury car anymore — it wasn’t worth bragging about.

Owning a luxury car don’t increase your status as a smart, wealthy person, who was clearly smarter and wealthier than everyone else.

This luxury car owner went to sleep the night before, delighted that the car in the garage was shiny, new, and state of the art.

That it was safe, efficient, and worthy — and then he or she woke up to discover that the story was no longer true.

Tesla understood that no one who bought one of the first fifty thousand Teslas actually needed a car — they all had perfectly fine cars.

So Elon Musk created a car that changed the story that a specific group told themselves.

Now, owning a Tesla gives you the status of early adopter and tech geeks and environmentalists — they make you a hero.



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