Six Steps for Building a Successful Storytelling Strategy
Willona M. Sloan
This post is part of the three-part series about corporate storytelling. Check out the previous posts here and here.
We’ve talked about why you need to be telling stories and where to find them. Now, let’s drill down into your storytelling strategy.
Engaging stories can help to connect people to your company. Through your stories, you can establish trust. People can learn what your company values and how you do business. In today’s marketplace, the most successful companies are the ones that create a brand image that their customers can identify with and relate to directly.
Whether your organization is new to storytelling or if you want to take it to the next level, here are some tips for creating a winning strategy:
1. Look at what you’re already doing. Analyze your various content channels. Where is your company’s content being disseminated and how often? Are you telling stories on any of your content channels? Is anyone clicking through to read them? Look at what’s working and expand on those positive results.
If you have stories posted that no one is reading, take the time to analyze the content. Are you sharing engaging and emotionally-resonant stories? Are you sharing new information? Are you motivating and inspiring the reader with content that they might want to act on or share?
2. Set new goals. Determine how you will use stories to increase new business outreach and customer engagement. Setting goals will help you determine what types of stories will help you reach them. A successful storytelling strategy should be guided by goals.
3. Don’t rely on one person to create your company’s stories. While you want consistent messaging and aligned content, and you want someone to own the strategy, you do not want everything your company publishes to sound like it was written by the same person. Also, relying on one person to write or approve all published content will prove disastrous. Which leads to the next point.
4. Train staff to be storytellers. The best way to improve your content is to have more people generating ideas. Did one of your sales reps get an email from a customer saying that your company’s product changed his life? That would make a great interview. Did your staff put together a volunteer event that really made an impact in the community? That would make a great story. Train staff to understand what content your company wants to communicate and ask for their help in identifying the customers and partners who can be your advocates.
5. Put your heart in it. Tell stories that matter. Tell stories that show impact and demonstrate a problem solved. Tell stories that are emotional and funny and inspiring. Tell stories that make people want to share them.
6. Study the competition. Watch companies both in your industry and elsewhere to gather tips and tricks that you can integrate. Creativity is the key. Take a risk and have some fun.
Willona Sloan provides content creation and storytelling training to help companies and nonprofit organizations engage, inform, and generate revenue.
Learn more at https://willonasloan.com.