In late 1880ties, a man walked into Atlanta pharmacy and asked for the drink. This time, he asked for syrup to be mixed with carbonated water. Drink was different than usual, but better!
Although, success of the drink was due to a chance, it hadn’t dwindled with years. Still, no one really knows true ingredients of the syrup, which made it successful. Its secret is guarded by two company officials that have joint keys to the vault.
I guess till now you guessed the name of the drink, yet its name hadn’t been mentioned. We just know what it is, just by listening to the story. We could say that this is the stuff of legend, even.
I used this example to welcome you to this page, where I will publish my take on branding in digital era. Furthermore, I believe that storytelling is the only way to go in future, for any advertising to be successful.
Stories are what bind people together, what follows us from our childhood to our end. We engage, relate and process truths about ourselves, society and our families. Still, we regard stories as past-time event. Something to take our mind of trouble, as means of escape.
On the other hands, stories are still powerful vehicles of communication in a world where we are surrounded by information and messaging.
Brand building other way around
Usually concept of brand building is made by taking the core value and communicating it through series of disengaged campaigns. Some people don’t believe in brand core values anymore, it’s just matter of provoking and engaging the market.
Information on competitors and market are processed, focus groups define the target group, the same group is a measure for selecting communication channels and premade message is sent.
Action by the consumer is specifically designed to be measured, so it rely on sales data, awareness increase, conversion rates.
These are then processed, evaluated, and campaign is tweaked in round two. These are mostly logical, rational arguments, much like process that led to the campaign solution.
What I propose is begin with the brand, find stories about the brand and communicate them. It’s that simple.
Stories resonate and find their audience in the end. It is just question of effectively communicating them.
Repeat the story and you become folklore, a legacy, legend, much like the drink from the beginning. Brand will get stronger with time and repetition and consumers will choose the brand not because of rational arguments (i.e., discounts, price and distribution) but because its core brand attributes and values that resonate with them through the power of the well-executed storytelling.
I welcome you to ‘Branding through storytelling’ and hope you will re-visit soon.