What on earth shall I post now? Most of my clients struggle with coming up with content ideas each week. They may be creatives, but their mind goes blank when it comes to Instagram stories or blog articles. What can you do to spice this up? Try storytelling! Storytelling is a powerful tool for content marketing that helps captivate and connect with your audience on a deeper level. Here are some content ideas for creatives, and examples on how to incorporate storytelling into your marketing strategy as a small business.
Understand your brand story
Sure, you can tell any old story about your everyday life, your passion for yoga, your artistic hobbies or your cooking skills. But to make it resonate with your audience, it’s got to be relevant to their needs and interests. Start by identifying your brand’s unique story. What inspired you to start your business? Which challenges have you overcome? What values and principles guide your work? Develop an inspiring narrative that resonates with your audience and showcases the essence of your brand.
Example: A small artisanal chocolate company could share the story of their founder’s journey to once having tasted rare cacao beans in a remote rainforest while traveling, highlighting their commitment to sustainability and supporting local communities.
Know your audience’s story
Your own story will already give you plenty of material to write about. But how do you know if these weird and wonderful stories land well with your audience? The key is to also understand your target audience’s aspirations, pain points, and desires. Create a picture of your dream client to better understand their backgrounds, motivations, and challenges. This will help you tailor your storytelling to address their needs and create content that speaks directly to them.
Example: A freelance graphic designer could share stories of startup challenges faced by small business owners and how effective design solutions helped them build their reputation, brand, and achieve success.
Humanise your content:
Bring human elements into your storytelling to make it relatable and authentic. Use personal anecdotes, testimonials, or interviews with customers, employees, or partners to add a human touch to your content.
Example: An eco-friendly clothing brand could share stories of the artisans who handcraft their products, emphasising their commitment to fair trade and sustainable practices while highlighting the craftsmanship and unique stories behind each item.
Create emotional connections
Triggering emotions through storytelling can leave a lasting impact on your audience and provide great content ideas for creatives as part of their marketing strategy. Use emotions like joy, surprise, nostalgia, or inspiration to evoke a response and forge a connection with your audience. No sob stories, please, and don’t overdo it, but sharing some vulnerability and personal struggles do usually attract a lot of engagement.
Example: A nonprofit organisation working to empower underprivileged children could share heartwarming success stories of children whose lives have been transformed through their programmes, evoking empathy and inspiring support.
Use visuals effectively
Pair your storytelling with visually appealing content. Images, videos, infographics, or illustrations can enhance the impact of your story, making it more engaging and memorable.
Example: A travel agency could create a video series showcasing the breathtaking landscapes and cultural experiences of different destinations, weaving in personal stories of travelers to evoke wanderlust and excitement.
Consistency across channels:
Maintain consistency in your storytelling across different marketing channels when coming up with content ideas. Ensure that your brand story is reflected in your website, social media posts, emails, and any other touch points with your audience. You don’t want to look all informal and multi-coloured on one channel, and be all formal and mocochrome on another. Resonate with the same type of audience. Keep in mind who you are trying to reach! Stick to the same tone of voice, types of images and brand colours.
Example: A creative agency could use consistent visual elements, such as a signature color palette or typography, across their website, social media posts, and presentations, reinforcing their brand story and creating a cohesive brand experience.
Creating connection and building trust
Remember, storytelling is about creating a connection and building a relationship with your audience. Authenticity, relatability, and emotional resonance are key elements that can help you craft compelling stories that leave a lasting impression and make your brand really stand out from the crowd.