February is the month of love and while our business will not be sending us flowers, I can safely say most entrepreneurs (myself included) run companies founded by a passion, rooted in a love for something specific or because we had a spark of an idea or business model that had to see the light of day.
With time though those emotional first steps had to be balanced with more head-based decisions because passion is a “strong and barely controllable emotion” that cannot sustain in the reality of running a business. It burns out to be replaced by a love for what we do and a more levelheaded approach to how we do it. This process, those early days of learning, of trial and error, becomes an important part of a companies’ story.
Why does your company need to tell its story? To stand out from the noise and cookie-cutter marketing of your competitors. Business storytelling provides a compelling reason for consumers to buy from you, It inspires trust and draws people in.
Modern companies are expected to have a personality, a willingness to share who they are. Writing and sharing your company’s story also gives you control of the message, don’t let others weave a false tale of who you really are.
After you have crafted and shared your original story, the rest will be an ongoing process enabling existing customers and potential new customers the opportunity to see who you are; the growth, shifts and yes, even the stumbles.
Today’s consumer wants transparency from the companies they do business with so when and where do you use it?
“Use your story on your company’s About page, in your emails, in your brochures, in any direct mail you send out, and at events where you are speaking. The rule is: “Everywhere you are, your story should be, too.” Neil Patel, Author & Digital Marketer
Sometimes you will just include a few sentences such as when you are introduced at a networking event. Your website’s About page needs to come to life with four to five well-written paragraphs. Marketing will become more authentic and unique through ‘story’ blurbs in your ads or social media.
Good story copy covers:
- The reason why your company came to be
- Which problem do you solve?
- What are you doing now to fix the problem?
- A view of the people behind the company
- Your values, something that you and your staff/team embrace
- What’s your mission, what are you all working towards?
Be honest, be authentic; don’t dwell on the irrelevant but don’t shy away from sharing the rough patches as well as the successes and aha moments. The words should energize, motivate, and inspire the reader or listener.
Visuals bring a story to life, not just on your social media platforms but also on your website especially the About page. Visitors no longer want to be met with a sea of words when they visit your website. There should be a blend of professional and personal snapshots all intended to capture you, your staff and behind the scene peeks at your business
Ultimately it comes down to sharing the journey of something you love.
(Photo by Ian Schneider on Unsplash)
Jill Crossland is a business and marketing consultant who can take your business and social media to the next level.