As impossible as it may seem, we are only a few short months away from the start of 2020. There is still a lot to be done in 2019, but when it comes to marketing your business, investing some time to look ahead to see how you can prepare yourself and your business for what is to come can do a lot for you in the long run. During the month of August, I will focus on how you can position yourself and your business for marketing success in the coming year.
I am continuing my look ahead at 2020 by talking about the value of telling your story in marketing. (Make sure to check out my first two blogs of the month where I wrote about 2020 marketing trends and the importance of developing a system of marketing.)
So what does telling your story have to do with marketing your business in the upcoming year? As I discussed in my marketing trends blog, it is getting tougher to attract and maintain a steady audience in this environment of fragmented media. People have more choices than ever when it comes to the media they consume, and their attention is constantly split.
If you wish to build a loyal following, your goal is to stand out, make connections, and build trust with your target audience. You want them to trust that the products or services you provide will address the pain points that they are experiencing. To get your audience to the point of purchase, you must first get them to listen to what you are saying. Telling your story and the story of your business excellent way to do that.
Being open and honest with who you are and what your business represents is a great way to begin the relationship.
Determine How Your Audience Views Your Brand
Your brand is both how your company views itself internally and how it is viewed externally by anyone outside your organization. The best brands are the ones who keep those views aligned. This means that the image and message you spread internally is being seen and felt by the world outside the walls of your company.
Telling the story of your business, how you got started and why you do what you do puts you in control of your message. You are in control of how your brand is viewed by the people who have a vested stake in your business and those who you wish to see you in a positive light—your current and potential customers.
Create a Unique Customer Experience
I wrote about creating a customer experience several weeks ago. When you tell the story of your business, you let people see more than just the services and brands you are selling. You are letting your audience see the people and organization behind the brand, which allows them to create a deep connection.
Logo, colors, fonts, and other aspects of branding are things that make up the aesthetics of your brand. What gives your brand life is the people who work for you. Opening yourself up so your audience sees who and what is behind the brand allows for a greater level of authenticity.
In a world where it feels almost impossible to find anything authentic, finding something you can connect with feels special and unique.
Learn More About Your Customers
The more you know about your target audience, the better you are able to market to them. Learning about your target audience can be difficult, especially with a renewed concern for online safety and privacy.
However when you take the first step by telling the story of your business, you create an environment where they feel that they can share more about themselves. Remember, part of marketing is about building trust.
It does not matter if you are trying to get them to give you their email address, take a survey, or make a purchase. If you do not work at building trust first, chances are you will not have a chance to learn more about who your audience is and how you should address their needs.
More Buy-In from Your Team
It is very hard to have a successful brand if you do not have buy-in from people throughout your organization. It cannot just be upper-management or a select mid-managers. For your brand to be successful, everyone on your team must be on the same page.
Telling your story creates buy-in because then you are publicly setting the terms for the way you want your business to be seen by others. If you hold yourself and others in your organization to the standard you set forth in the story of your business, then you will have a team ready to buy into your brand.
So much of marketing is storytelling. It’s crafting a narrative about why you started your business, what mission is, and who the people behind the brand are. When you are the author of that story, then you become the storyteller of your business. This puts you in the position of trust and allows you to have more influence by building a larger following.