Rise Above the Noise: Tell a Unique Brand Story


Ever asked yourself one of these questions?

  • How do we stand out in the marketplace?
  • How do we increase sales when our competitors have similar offerings?
  • If fruits had personalities, would apples be considered reliable and bananas adventurous?

OK, maybe not that last one. But if you’ve ever asked the first two, this article is for you.

Today, simply relying on the quality of your product or service is not enough. Do this and you’ll fall into a messaging rinse and repeat cycle. That, or fade out of the sky like a falling star.

We’ve all heard the cliches:

“Our service is better!”

“Our product outperforms!”

To customers, this is just noise. And you’re left competing with every next best thing that comes along.

It’s one thing to grab your customer’s attention. It’s another thing to hold it.

A little about the long game

First, let’s talk about the basics.

Marketing is the short-term meet and greet – putting on your best face and telling the world how fabulous you are.

Branding, on the other hand, is your long-term commitment to building a connection, or brand salience.

These two work in tandem, woven together by the thread of storytelling to create a robust, heartfelt marketing strategy.

By nature, humans connect through stories. From our own personal histories to Hollywood movies to cultural myths, stories capture our emotions and allow us to connect to characters on a deeper level. It’s part of being human.

According to Forbes, humanity is becoming the new premium. What on earth does that mean?

These days, companies are crafting their own personalities from beliefs, values, commitments and opinions they share with their audience. In a world that’s becoming increasingly digital and AI continuing to grow in the content creation process, making a connection is more important now than ever.

Compare this to endearing friendships you’ve had. Those friends have most likely supported you, embraced your self-expression while sharing their losses and triumphs with you.

Brands are no different. You must build affection over time for your product. And to stand out from the pack you must do at least two things:

  1. Be genuinely empathetic to your customers deepest challenges
  2. Have some stake in our shared future of the world beyond making money

How does your customer emotionally feel after their experience? It’s this kind of thinking that builds trust and allows your customers to get to know you and care for you.

If everything was taken away today, what would you be remembered for?

Say your customer is the lead character in your movie. Here’s the journey:

  • Your customer faces a challenge: I need (service/product).
  • Your customer stumbles upon a guide: You.
  • Who gives them a tool or advice: Your product/service.
  • This tool calls them to act: Pursues victory.
  • Which helps them avoid failure: The product/service solved their problem.
  • The hero (your customer) is transformed: They are fulfilled and brand salience begins.
  • Our hero spreads the magic: They advocate for the brand.

Your brand story should exist at all points along this path. This is pivotal in your marketing strategy where not to lose your passion and take a bite of the apple. Today’s customer appreciates the foundation you’ve built, but is it something they can relate to? Give them all of you so you can be a reflection of your customer.

People will forget your product – they won’t forget how it made them feel

Weaving together your values with your position in the marketplace is what makes the difference with customers. Sometimes, these values have nothing to do with the actual product or service you are selling. For example, a beer company that donates money to local dog shelters because they love dogs.

Think of it this way. How can you build your customers into a group who doesn’t just pay for your product to solve an immediate hurdle but supports your years-long success.

Getting there can be tough. But here are some questions that can spark ideas:

  • How do I/we do business?
  • What is our impact on the industry?
  • What is our influence on the customer? On the world?
  • Why does our existence matter?
  • How are we helping our customer’s values feel seen and celebrated?
  • All in all, what is our vision that customers can subscribe to?

Brands are personalities that help create the backstory. Products or services create the hero. They enhance your customer’s lifestyle and procure long-lasting customer relationships.

You can kick-start building this brand sentiment and brand equity sooner than you think. Are you the apple or the banana? Get started telling your brand’s story.

Ken Zakovich

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