What is brand storytelling? Two answers

What is brand storytelling? Two answers

November 17, 2015

 

November 17, 2015

 

What is brand storytelling? Two answers

WRITTEN BY

Tony Hallett
Managing director

Tony set up Collective Content in 2011 so brands can more easily become publishers and tell stories. This built on 15 years in media, from reporter to publishing director at Silicon Media Group, CNET Networks and CBS Interactive.

You’d expect us to know the answer to that, given our tagline is ‘We tell your stories’. And we do know the answer – it’s just that the question is open to interpretation.

Storybook

Last week, ClickZ took a stab at explaining brand storytelling through several examples including stalwarts such as Dove and GoPro but also those that I’d associate more with the term such as Facebook and Jack Daniels.

Why the distinctions? To some, brand storytelling is about a brand. So hearing about the quirks and history of the Jack from Jack Daniels (Did he ever exist? Is that important?) is an example of about.

Alternatively, some consider brand storytelling to mean brands telling stories about anything that’s entertaining or useful to those consuming that content, strengthening the relationship with those customers or prospects. It’s brands as storytellers – where the stories can be almost anything.

I must say, at Collective Content we lean towards the second definition. But it’s also fine if you mean brand storytelling to be content about your organisation. If that’s the case, we’d say only that the bar is set even higher. Getting this right is hard.

To come back to that Jack Daniels example, that brand’s content – online, on posters, on TV and so on – is high quality, varied, often seasonal and employing humour. But it’s still not to everyone’s taste, much like its flagship product.


Working from a broader palette gives you more options and means you’re not always talking about yourself. We’d encourage that – and you might well say we would say that.


*photo credit: The Story via photopin (license)
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