Corporate Storytelling: what it is, how to use it, examples

Corporate storytelling is the right technique to adopt if you have a business and want to add value to your brand to stand out from your competitors.

If you want to elevate your brand through a communication strategy, understanding and effectively using Storytelling Marketing will change your initial perception of a product or service.

It will transform it from a mere object into an animated entity, with its own identity, resonating with the end user, and creating in them the desire or need to make a purchase.

In this guide, I will explain what corporate storytelling is, its definition, how it differs from Interruption Marketing, and why it makes a difference for companies that use it.

Additionally, I will show you some examples of effective storytelling for well-known brands and the skills of corporate storytelling you need to acquire to succeed in your profession.

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What is corporate storytelling?

The definition of Corporate Storytelling indicates the art of telling the soul and meanings of the company, narrating stories that connect the values they share with potential customers, consumers, and employees.

The goal is to build a positive relationship, even an emotional connection between the company and the target audience, through the telling of an engaging story.

Today, communicating with users requires capturing their attention, especially amidst an overload of information. Consumers are increasingly discerning and selective, quickly ignoring content perceived as purely commercial and self-referential.

This is why Corporate Storytelling has become the famous tipping point, capable of shifting the user’s focus directly onto the content’s core, through communication that must be informative, comprehensive, increasingly concise, and above all, emotionally engaging.

The goal is for the user to subconsciously associate a specific product or service with the company itself, becoming a true fan who, through consuming stories, not only buys the product but also talks about it, shares their experience, and even involves others, encouraging third-party purchases.

Examples of Corporate Storytelling that we experience daily as consumers lead us to say that it is a tool where creative ideas and imagination make the difference. On the other hand, technically, we can define it as democratic because it is accessible to all companies, regardless of their size.

Now that we have seen what Corporate Brand Storytelling is, let’s analyze the meaning of the word storytelling, to understand why companies have decided to invest in this activity of persuasive marketing.

 

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How to use

We can say that corporate storytelling is a powerful tool used for personal branding as well, based on the use of narration.

Often, the text is accompanied by visual content because their use has proven fundamental on the Web in amplifying the narrative concept.

In this regard, visual storytelling is closely related to content marketing. Video has emerged as a preferred channel for corporate storytelling or business storytelling.

When done well, video possesses all the necessary characteristics for the best online communication. Many companies have adopted visual storytelling in social media cover photos to increase engagement with their target audience.

corporate storytelling training

First and foremost, the task of storytelling is to declare the values and identity of the brand through effective narration.

Now, try to imagine a classic story, perhaps a fairy tale, and think about its structure. There is usually a protagonist, a magical helper, an antagonist, and a final reward the hero must obtain.

Now, apply these concepts to a company’s communication strategy and you will discover how to create an empathetic relationship between the brand and its audience.

It’s no mystery that the presence of real and plausible characters in a narrative emotionally engages the viewer.

If the story told by the storyteller somehow reflects the experiences, goals, and dreams of the target audience, then corporate storytelling has hit the mark.

“Now, you might wonder, ‘In this story, what’s the company’s role?'” Plainly put: it acts as the enchanting assistant, effortlessly resolving user’s issues!”

Usage metrics

Many times, Digital Marketers work by setting goals, referring to views and click percentages, without being able to directly measure and relate these metrics to sales and return on advertising spending.

On the other hand, what matters to companies is to measure conversions in relation to consumer purchases. Therefore, the best way to ensure that you achieve your set goals is to test the actions along the way.

marketing storytelling metrics

In Corporate Storytelling, when shooting a video for a client, it is written and filmed in modular formats, so there is more creativity to experiment with and test to quickly understand and define a change in strategy if something doesn’t quite convince.

For example, conducting an A/B test on two versions of a video, one focusing on the company and one on the product, or one on the company and product and the other on support, allows us to obtain data that helps us understand that moment which strategy is potentially more effective.

Setting up a marketing campaign this way allows you to avoid budget wastage and optimize return on investment, in this case, Marketing Storytelling has the advantage of amplifying the result thanks to the emotional impact it generates on the target customer.

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Storytelling vs Interruption Marketing

In light of what has been said so far about corporate storytelling, it is important to understand the underlying concept of telling business stories. In short, what does storytelling mean? Is it a new concept? In what contexts is it used?

By definition, storytelling marketing is the art of telling stories used as a persuasive communication strategy, used not only in the business field but also in politics and economics.

So, we are talking about persuasive narration aimed at creating a strong emotional bond with the viewer. It is easy to understand how corporate storytelling introduces a new marketing model, opposite to traditional interruption marketing.

corporate brand strategy

In the latter case, the user is interrupted in consuming the content by one or more unwanted advertising messages (the name “banner” rings a bell, right?).

It is a more invasive and, in some ways, outdated way of doing marketing. It certainly stands in stark contrast to the idea that revolves around a strategy of corporate and brand storytelling.

In corporate storytelling, the company’s message is already embedded within the story. A good strategy, followed by the best storytellers around, involves, for example, attracting the viewer to the content, not the other way around.

This way, the user becomes a spectator and feels like they are watching a pleasant and exciting show, sometimes unforgettable. Just like in the videos I’m about to tell you about.

Nike and Google: successful examples

After discussing some theory together, I want to introduce you to three very interesting successful cases:

Nike

The example of Nike’s corporate storytelling is perfect for its success. Indeed, the company has always been mindful of using corporate storytelling to create a strong brand image.

The “Impossible Is Nothing” ad, with over 32 million views, tells the story of an ordinary world of people who, through dedication and sacrifice, can achieve great things. It emphasizes that it’s not important what we can do today, but what we can become tomorrow.

Nike deserves great credit for focusing on people, on the protagonists who become heroes. Watching this video, each of us can recognize ourselves.

The magical object, like football shoes or Nike uniforms, becomes the means to help us accomplish the feat.

Google

Google’s storytelling project is undoubtedly among the best ever created. The Mountain View giant certainly needs no introduction. Yet, through its ads, it has been able to emotionally narrate the usefulness that the search engine can have for people.

Google’s Reunion ad is truly engaging: an elderly man confides in his young granddaughter his greatest desire, to see his childhood friend again after many years.

And thanks to the simple use of Google’s search engine, the dream turns into reality. Here, corporate storytelling proves to be the best choice: technology acquires a human face and helps people for free. From Google, what else could we expect?

Skills for corporate storytelling

To turn corporate storytelling into your profession, you need to start with the assumption that it’s not enough to just tell a story.

You need to develop a strategic vision that takes into account the following points:

  • Ask yourself what values of the company you want to communicate.
  • Reflect well on the audience you intend to address.
  • Analyze what objectives and results you want to achieve with corporate storytelling.
  • Question if you can create a narrative, even a complex one, that can emotionally engage your audience.
  • Corporate video storytelling and visual storytelling are at the center of your strategy, you should include high-quality videos and images.

It is a series of skills of various kinds, discussed in detail in an interview with Sonia Milan. Some may be innate, while others need to be acquired through learning and field practice.

Corporate storytelling is a great opportunity for those who can use it, but one cannot improvise in this field.

There are many books and other informational resources about storytelling, but if you intend to make a profession out of it, it is highly recommended to start with specific and structured training.

Corporate Storytelling: Digital Coach Courses

Digital Coach offers a Digital Storytelling course aimed at recent graduates, aspiring storytellers, freelancers, small business owners, bloggers, and journalists.

The goal of the training program is to provide all the necessary tools to start a successful career in the world of Corporate Storytelling.

digital storytelling course

The course is extremely useful for those working in companies, small businesses, or startups, providing the opportunity to learn the secrets of telling and promoting your business successfully.

Not convinced yet? Digital Coach, a certified Google Partner and a leader in Web Marketing education allows you to train with a course in Corporate Storytelling online or on demand. With this course, you can:

  • Understand all the phases of Digital Storytelling: starting from the idea/brand to crafting the story.
  • Learn to create professional content using the best tools available in the market.
  • Discover how to create and develop a potentially viral and successful narrative.
  • Learn from top specialists all the secrets that contribute to a successful Storytelling project.
  • Create a corporate brand identity for companies and for yourself.

 

Download our free ebook to learn more about Storytelling

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Conclusion

A product or service that triggers an emotion in those who seek it is an item that has already been sold.

Companies have understood this very well, thanks to corporate storytelling, creating in the user not only the need to purchase a product but even conditioning him in his choices and creating a well-defined style, where everyone identifies based on their own tastes.

Do not hesitate to contact us to understand how to integrate storytelling into your company

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