Is Your Lifestyle Brand Shaping A Memorable Digital Story?
As a lifestyle brand, you want your customers to incorporate your products into their lives. An essential ingredient in lifestyle branding is to create compelling narratives that attract consumers.
A good narrative or story will make consumers feel something. They’ll be able to get a better understanding of your values and be inspired to incorporate your product or services in their life.
Take Airbnb, for example. As an online marketplace with properties for rent to travelers, in the case of Airbnb, their brand is both the hosts and guests. Although Airbnb doesn’t have a product, it shares its customers stories in a section on their website called “Stories from the Airbnb Community.”
As part of Airbnb’s Belong Anywhere branding campaign, they used images and short films to show snapshots of the lives of Airbnb hosts and their hosting experience for their guests. Instead of showcasing their brand as rooms or places for rent, they’re using stories to showcase the experience of staying at a place like a local. They’ve positioned their customer as the center of their brand. Sharing their host’s stories also answer a pressing question or pain-point for the customers using Airbnb: what will the experience of staying at a stranger’s place be like?
New customers may feel anxious about staying at a stranger’s place but by using articles, videos, and storytelling, Airbnb is able to create an excitement for an authentic travel experience.
Here are 3 types of stories each brand should have in their arsenal. Keep these stories in your brand tool-kit:
1. Brand History: This digital story tells the consumer who you are. Highlight the brand's journey from the past to the present. Take the consumer on a journey of self-discovery and establish an emotional connection with the consumer. You may want to mention mistakes or reveal other brand vulnerabilities if appropriate in this section.
2. Show of Vision of Your Future: Create a story that show's your brands potential for the future and what it needs to achieve to get there.
3. Show Brand Values: Use a narrative to showcase your brand's culture and values. What does your brand stand for? What is your team culture? Show the values that you want your entire team and consumers to connect with.
How to create a memorable brand story for your brand:
Know your goals: A brand story is created in a business context with the intention to create results or impact consumer behavior. Answer the following questions to help identify the goals for your brand story:
- What’s the purpose of your digital story?
- Who is the audience of your digital story?
- What’s in it for them?
- What is the key takeaway?
Once you have set your goals for your brand’s digital story, you can follow these steps to start creating your story.
Story Framework: Create a digital story with a narrative arc. Use Freytag’s pyramid to create your story’s framework:
Act 1: Exposition (Inciting moment)
Act 2: Complication (Rising Action)
Act 3: Climax (turning point)
Act 4: Reversal (falling action)
Act 5: Denouement (Moment of release)
2. Create more than one story: Ask your team members and/or customers to share stories of their interactions with the brand, service, or product. Gathering these stories will help you get different perspectives with the brand’s history and culture.
3. Hire experts: Hire a brand communication expert to give your brand story a competitive edge. If you’re looking for a polished brand story, an outsider’s fresh perspective can bring creativity and help you consider aspects of a brand story you may have missed.
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