If you want to connect with your target audience, make storytelling a part of your content strategy.
If you want content marketing to make a big impact on your business, your audience needs to connect with your content. You need to engage them. You need to grab them emotionally and intellectually. You need to get them thinking.
The best content feels like a great story. That’s because stories do all those things and more.
Content that reads like a great story will facilitate engagement and brand loyalty with your audience, which, in turn, will lead to content marketing success. Here are some tips to incorporate storytelling into your content strategy.
Make your brand tangible to your audience.
Statistics and graphics have their time and place. But real people and real experiences are the best way to connect with your audience on a deeper level. Tell real stories — how a customer benefitted from your product, for example — to get your audience to understand what your company can do for them.
When you engage readers and get them involved in your story, you create long-lasting customer relationships. Storytelling makes them form an emotional bond with your company, which drives brand loyalty.
Greg Hadden, executive creative director of Motive Made Studios, sums up the power of this strategy: “What often gets lost is the fact that good storytelling is potent stuff. It has the power to make people want to believe and to belong, which is the goal of all storytellers. We’re all selling something, be it an idea, an exploration of the human condition, or say, a vacuum cleaner. It’s no mistake perhaps that good stories often create products.”
Humanize your content.
Yes, at the end of the day, we’re all selling something. But your content should not be a sales pitch — it should speak to your audience rather than at them. It should connect with them on a human level.
Your content should represent what you do, what your customers stand to gain, and how you are making life better for your customers and those around you. It should convey genuine enthusiasm for your work.
One of the best ways to tap into this enthusiasm is by thinking about what your company stands for and building content around those principles. Is sustainability at the core of your mission? Does your company pride itself on improving customers’ productivity and efficiency? These are messages that can humanize your brand — and that your audience can believe in and relate to.
Whole Foods is an exceptional example of a company using content to connect with its audience and establish itself as a lifestyle brand focused on healthy eating and living. It curates content, for example, about how to save money while still eating healthily. While not directly related to its products, this kind of content understands the needs of the target audience interested in Whole Foods’ products. Further, its content conveys the company’s passion for earth-conscious living and uses proactive language to allow readers to feel like they have an active role in that mission.
Successful content begins with connection. The more you can walk the line between telling a story and promoting your brand, the more connections you’ll make. Start by being yourself and talking about what drives you in your content. The stories you share will be authentic and tangible to the target consumer who is interested in what you have to offer.
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