Spoiler Alert: You’re sitting on the secret to your small business’s growth

By | Published March 11th, 2022 | in Uncategorized

Spoiler Alert: You’re sitting on the secret to your small business’s growth

Every business has a story. Small businesses, especially, have compelling ones. A family that left everything behind for new opportunities, a passion organically turned profitable, a calling to serve a cause or a certain community. 

Are you telling your company’s story? If not, hear us out on why it deserves a spot near the top of your priority list. 

What is Your Story? 

In reality, your business has many different stories. There is an origin story (how your business came to be), the story of your values and culture … even where you see your company in the next five years, can be conveyed in the form of a story. 

Storytelling is an essential technique to any marketing endeavor, as it is proven to capture and retain people’s attention much more effectively than information that exists outside of a story structure. 

In his article for the Harvard Business Review, researcher and author Paul J. Zak explains that when we listen to stories, our brains produce the chemical oxytocin – a chemical that gives us a sense that it is safe to approach someone, we can trust the situation and lower our guard. He goes on to write, “my experiments show that character-driven stories with emotional content result in a better understanding of the key points a speaker wishes to make and enable better recall of these points weeks later.” 

If you’re going to share information, packaging it in the form of a story is your best bet for it to be heard and remembered. In addition to this, though, there are other benefits for small businesses in telling their story. 

Storytelling Can Humanize and Differentiate Your Brand 

Telling your story allows you to have a moment of vulnerability that helps create a much more human connection when someone is thinking about buying from you or working with you. It takes away the cold label and adds a face and a belief system to a product or service. 

In the Forbes article, Why Every Business Needs Powerful Storytelling to Grow, journalist Celinne De Costa writes, “We have been telling stories for as long as we’ve been human–they are an absolutely essential part of our day-to-day communications. When done well, storytelling can do wonders for a business: such as turn a brand into a legacy, create a robust marketing strategy, generate profit and win the loyalty and affection of audiences, to name just a few.”

According to PwC’s Global Consumer Insights Survey, more than one in three consumers surveyed ranked “trust in brand” among the top three factors, other than price, influencing their decision to shop at a particular retailer. We tend to trust people more than we trust corporations, so humanizing your brand by telling your story will give you an edge in this pursuit. 

Finally, there are lots of places people can shop or work. What sets you apart from the pack? Plenty of people offer similar services, but your story is uniquely yours and can be the difference between a customer picking you or your competition.

4 Tips on Telling Your Business’s Story 

At Ambient Skies, we love working with local brands because there’s an unspoken connection between them and us. We love hearing how they got their start in Arizona, and we love sharing our story with them. It’s the first degree of connection that can lead to a beautiful partnership.  

Over the years, through working with clients to tell their stories and in telling ours, we’ve learned a thing or two about what works and want to share 4 tips to telling a great story about your business. 

1. Define and target messaging to your audience 

Who is your target audience, and what do they want? What do you have in common with them? You’ll want to relate to this audience specifically and you can’t do this unless you have identified your audience and determined what they want. 

2.  Keep it simple 

You want to have just enough information in your story to define it but not so much as to overwhelm or cause the reader to lose focus. It might take some brainstorming, but getting clear on your main point will help you craft a more compelling story. Take a look at RxBar’s brand story for inspiration. We like how it focuses on a main idea: the RxBar is simple, especially compared to other protein bars, and so is the company’s mission. 

3.  Focus On What Makes You Unique 

By telling your story, you can put a face to your brand and create a perception of what your brand stands for. Herein lies a great opportunity to differentiate your business from your competitors. A good example of a brand that told their company origin story through the angle of what made them different is Warby Parker. The online eyewear supplier’s story is built upon the idea that they saw a gap in the marketplace. 

4. Evoke Emotion

Attention-grabbing and memorable stories are those that create emotion. The more personal you can be in your storytelling, the more your audience will be able to relate to you. To find the emotion, you’ll want to look for the human side to your business – maybe that’s the story of its beginnings or the people it serves. In this viral video advertisement for Ariel (Southeast Asia’s largest laundry soap manufacturer), the company uses a heartfelt narrative to speak to its main demographic, housewives doing the laundry by themselves because the culture has prescribed women the task for too long.

Ready to Tell Your Story? Need Help? 

Our passion is telling local Arizona stories. We’re here to help you strategize, create content and market your business. We’re just a phone call away. 

 

Who Are We?

Ambient Skies is a full service entertainment production company focused on creative storytelling for commercials, documentaries, and narratives.

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About The Author:

Deanna Beghtol