What role does Storytelling play in deciding the brands you love?
Think about the brands that you identify with and find more meaning in. Maybe Nike or Apple or Starbucks are on that list. Or, maybe your local coffee shop and a non-profit like Charity Water top your list.
Why do these brands stick out? More likely than not, it’s because they have mastered the art of transcendent brand storytelling.
I like to call on Patagonia as a great example of this. Patagonia does some of the best brand storytelling in the world. If you aren't familiar, Patagonia offers outdoor wear and outdoor gear for active lifestyles; but their brand messaging is much more about where their customers work and play and where their gear is used.
How do we create transcendent brand stories?
Many people know the Patagonia brand without even knowing what they do as a merchant. In fact, they share more about what they believe in than they do their actual products.
Patagonia's brand storytelling speaks about the environment where their products are used, the reason they create the products they create, and why they make changes to be better stewards of the environments they love.
And, that’s one of the keys to transcendent brand storytelling: pinpointing your "WHY."
The reason Patagonia is so successful in their branding is that they demonstrate their WHY in every single thing they do. Their unwavering focus on WHY shows they are more concerned with community than the objects they create. It’s helped build a tribe and allowed their brand to transcend discussions of color and price and SKUs.
Joy Howard, now former VP of Marketing, but author of their brand strategy, talked about Patagonia’s approach to brand storytelling:
“Product is always at the foundation for us and we have a very obsessive commitment to making the best product. People come into the brand through the product but it takes them a long time to learn about what the company stands for. Once they do, they’re hooked on the brand forever. So as a marketing team, the task is very simple, and that’s to make it easy for people to discover what the company is all about, and make sure it’s not hidden and tough to access. Because once they do know, they’re in. They’re with us.”
“Worn Wear” is a documentary produced by Patagonia that tells a story about their brand (even though they don’t sell used clothing).
Make sure your WHY comes through in everything you do.
How can YOU tell transcendent brand stories? How can you be like Patagonia?
You probably don’t have the resources, neither staff nor budget, that big brands like Nike and Apple have. Producing “Worn Wear” was obviously a large investment for Patagonia.
Take another look at the brands you love. Remember, their storytelling starts with their WHY. You can do that.
But, once you've identified your WHY, it’s critical that you carry out that ideal through all your brand messaging. Whether it’s email marketing, photo staging, campaigns, messaging, visuals, or conversations - consistently share your WHY through every aspect of your brand storytelling.
When you weave your WHY into everything you do, including the experience of buying from you or working with you, that is when you start to create a transcendent brand.
For more on the power of great brand storytelling, check out Why Storytelling Sells. It's our gift to you.
If you'd like to talk about your WHY and transforming your company's into a transcendent brand story, click this link to schedule a free call.