'Let me tell you a little story...'
Nowadays we can hear these words from so many people, brands, and companies.
Even in ancient times, people would paint pictures in the caves telling the stories of their lives, or sit around the fire, sharing their day with others. Back then, it was not only a way of communicating and transferring knowledge and experience. It was a necessity for survival. Today, stories are so much more. They can be whatever you want them to be. But to be the best, they must be unique, relevant & honest.
Storytelling in digital marketing
From the marketing point of view, stories can be a powerful tool. With so many social media platforms and so much content - created more and more each day - there is a big fight for customers' attention. We are now used to multiscreening and multitasking, so our brain is constantly trying to save time and energy. Being exposed to a bunch of information every day, we get tired of brands trying to sell their products by telling us how 'cool' they are or that they're 'the best'.
The power of storytelling
The goal of storytelling isn't the standard 'push strategy' where you're persistently pushing your brand in customers' faces. It's about 'pull strategy' where you're offering and presenting your brand as a solution to a certain problem when they truly need it - not to everyone, and not all the time. Storytelling is all about customers reaching the brand, not the other way around.
The power of the story is has been proven throughout the lifetime. Research has shown that telling a story makes information much more memorable. Psychologist Jerome Bruner found that we are 22 times more likely to remember a fact when it is incorporated into a story.
Storytelling is a tool that can make one brand stand out. Especially because most brands and organizations focus only on sales and often forget or don't even know what their purpose is.
And why is purpose important for impactful storytelling? The story must be unique and honest, so every brand or organization must be aware of its “golden circle”. The golden circle model was presented by Simon Sinek and it's a value proposition theory that presents three major questions that every brand should answer:
Every organization knows what they are doing. These are the products or services they sell.
Some organizations know how they do it. These are the things that make them unique and set them apart from the competition.
Few organizations know why they do what they do. 'Why?' Is not about making money, it's the result. 'Why?' is purpose, belief, or reason. It represents the mission of an organization.
Once a brand discovers its purpose, belief, or reason, it can harness that value and create a strong and unique story. In these processes, it is important to remember that the story is user-centered and that the story must be created respecting the tone of the audience's voice. In other words, not only must a clear and interesting connection be found between 'Why?' and the user - the story itself must adapt to their common communication.
Brand identity and brand storytelling
Maybe the most unique of all brand elements is the name. Brand identity should always come from its origin, and the origin should always be incorporated into the name. Why? The brand's name is the first thing that your customers interact with - both existing and potential ones. It's the first connection to your brand. As we mentioned, using storytelling will make customers more likely to remember your brand's name - and that's what everyone wants, to be on top of their minds. So, when creating your business identity, the name it holds should be a result of the Golden Circle. It doesn't need to be that specific or long, but it must inspire customers to reach for more.
Brand identity in Younited
The most fun and the most challenging part of agency life in Younited is naming a brand while also thinking about its visual identity.
When approaching the brand naming, we start answering the Golden Circle questions in order. To get to know the brand and its products or services we do a lot of research before we start working on the naming. The fun fact is that we go as undercover customers and try the product or service to write everything we can advise to improve. This is a chance to better understand the client, and more important - their customers, and their point of view! We look at the agency-client relationship more like a partnership, so we try to advise them as much as we can.
Once we get the answers for what and how they are doing the business, we focus on the why. This last question is never possible to answer without the client, so prior to all the internal brainstorming we have a few meetings with them, gathering the real stories. Finally, we share the brief constructed with all the information, values, and impressions and present them to our whole team.
Yes! Everyone is included, and everyone is guided through the story process since we have some new team members. Here at Younited, we firmly believe that every additional point of view is valued and can highly contribute to brainstorming.
When presenting our ideas and names, we have two main approaches:
- Creating a name that will tell the current story of the brand
- Introducing the name that will tell a new story of the brand
The difference lies in the distance between where we are now and where we want to be as that brand. So, if the brand wants to hold its current market and expand it to a similar target group - we create a big wave in the existing sea. If the brand goes into rebranding and wants to change the market and seek for a new audience - we create a new sea.
Both approaches have to fulfill the same goal. The name must be the same as the story: unique, relevant & honest. That's why when we think about the name, we think about which kind of story we want to tell our customers. Does that name answer the story? Does it have enough space to play with the story? Once you connect the brand name with the story, you have yourself a winner.
You can inspire yourself with some of our winners on the link: Younited projects.