Storytelling became part of a marketing plan since consumers began to register changes in their consumption behavior. That is why it is necessary to know the actions product management framework that will help increase sales through storytelling.
It is already a fact that people do not want to be sold directly. Now you need to touch your emotions, connect with them, and then offer effective solutions, products, or services.
All of us, as human beings and as brands, have something to tell. The secret is in how to tell it to reach the opinion of the target audience and truly connect with the emotions of those who observe, listen and follow in the footsteps of a brand.
And for this, we have a very effective technique: storytelling.
In reality, storytelling is a daily routine practice, which you practice every day without realizing it.
Let’s imagine for a moment that you are on the bus and next to you sits someone you start talking to and tells you a terrifying story about his life. You are moved and you will possibly spend the rest of the day thinking about the sad story of that person you ran into on the bus on the way to the office.
Well-told stories, whether sad or happy, mark us and leave their mark on us because they arouse emotions.
The same goes for the stories told by brands with the intention of selling. They are made to touch the fibers of the consumer and that is why storytelling (or the art of storytelling) is a technique with great benefits.
If you want to take advantage of the potential of stories to reach the hearts of your customers, read on, because in this article you will discover the secrets to master the art of storytelling.
7 Keys to Increase Sales through Storytelling
Marketing expert Seth Godin once said, “Marketing is no longer about what is being sold, but about the stories being told.”
And it’s true, since consumers now value brands more for their stories than for their product.
Considering what Godin recommends, we name some of the keys to increase sales through storytelling.
1. Set The Target Audience
It is one of the first steps to put together a marketing strategy and it should be when it comes to storytelling.
A story should not necessarily appeal to everyone, nor should it be addressed to all kinds of audiences, because the message of the story does not reach everyone in the same way.
So, before starting to tell a story, think about your ideal niche, which in Inbound Marketing we call buyer people.
You have to take the time it takes to get to know the people to whom the message will be directed. You will agree that selling a product to a 10-year-old is not the same as selling to a 20-year-old. The way of seeing things is different and, therefore, the story must be adapted to the reality of each one.
2. Define The Goal of Your Story
If the expected result is to increase sales through storytelling, then things have to be done right from the start.
For this, the objective of the story must be established.
Before creating it, you have to ask yourself several questions, such as:
- Do I want to position my company?
- Do I want to publicize a product/service?
- Do I want to generate engagement with my audience?
- Educate the audience regarding a topic of social sensitivity?
Although the ultimate intention of storytelling is to increase sales, the message does not have to be raised to market products or services. There are different intentions and before creating a story that has valuable content, you have to be clear about what you want to communicate.
3. Understand Your Audience
This is a complicated point where confusion can be experienced. Understanding the needs of an audience for a product is not the same as understanding the correct way to connect with their emotions.
It is true that increasing sales through storytelling can be quick, but the construction of the message that will carry your story can take a long time when you do not know how to connect with your audience.
Stories that include joy, comedy, drama, and self-improvement are the ones that connect with the consumer naturally. Although it is very rare, sadness and irony are components that work very well when creating storytelling to sell.
First of all, the best thing will be to get to know the audience, know what they like and, from there, build an ideal message.
4. Create Memorable Characters
To increase sales with storytelling, it is key to create characters that awaken emotions and generate feelings in consumers, whether positive or negative.
Think of your favorite movie.
Do you remember the main characters? Those who, no matter what role they play in the plot (villain, superhero, sage, etc.) left their mark on you. What are their characteristics? Maybe someone marked you for their superhuman evil. Maybe it made you laugh, or cry, or had to overcome great obstacles.
Selling through storytelling has a lot to do with this, because the characters, their role in the plot and their characteristics are essential when telling a story, since they are the ones who connect with the audience, create a link and generate empathy. Thus, if the character suffers, cries or is happy, the audience feels the same.
5. Respect the 3 Stages of a Story
To increase sales through storytelling, you have to respect the 3 stages of a story: approach, knot, and outcome.
As if it were a movie, you can start backward; that is, you start with the knot, planets a solution and end with the outcome.
There are different ways to start a story, but only one thing must be clear when doing storytelling: the emotional context must never be altered.
Remember that the way to connect with the audience through stories is through emotions.
6. Show The Human Side of the Brand
Another factor that positively influences consumer behavior is that through stories, brands have the opportunity to humanize it, telling facts that anyone can experience.
In fact, one of the reasons that stories are effective in increasing sales is that, through them, the audience has an experience; experience that perhaps could have lived in own meat, a relative, an acquaintance, etc.
7. Tell a Story That Remains in the Memory and is Related to the Brand
To increase sales through storytelling, you must ensure that the message of the story is engraved in the memory of the audience.
Has it ever happened to you that you remember the character or the story of an advertisement, but do not remember what the brand is? It’s not a good thing, so be careful with that.
This situation can only mean one thing: they did not relate the brand well to the message of the story.
While it is true that the story must be kept in the minds of the target audience, it is also true that if the consumer does not relate the story to the brand, the objective is not met.
You always have to integrate what you want to tell about your brand, product or service with the stories of the audience. That will be the only element that makes you increase sales through storytelling.
How to Know If Your Story Will Connect with Your Audience
Does your story include the 7 requirements we have discussed? Now, check if you meet this list:
It has a central theme: it touches on themes such as death, life, love and hate, the departure or arrival of a human being (not necessarily linked to the death or birth of a baby), hope, strength, etc. The stories can relive events that any human being experiences and that have marked a stage in their life: childhood, adolescence, old age.
Stories with heroes will always be well received: they do not necessarily have to refer to heroes as Superman or Avengers. Real heroes, such as a doctor who cures a terminal illness in a girl. Humans need inspiration and a situation like this can be a stimulus for the audience.
There must be adversaries: it does not have to be an antagonistic figure. It can refer to a situation or stage of life that prevents harmonic development for a happy outcome.
End that adapts to the reality of the audience: perhaps this is the most complicated requirement. The idea is that each person can recreate an ending according to their own reality. That is, if you are dealing with a topic of personal improvement (such as, for example, that of the girl with the terminal illness), the intention is that the reader can recreate their own history based on the history of the brand.
Storytelling is a key part of creating a content marketing strategy. With a 3-minute story, you can do more than you think. You just have to learn to create a coherent message, made to capture, enchant and retain the consumer.
Finally, determine which channel will help you spread the story. This is as important as the message itself because if you do not know where your audience is, your efforts to increase sales through storytelling will not give the results you expect. Now tell me: do you use storytelling to connect with your customers? Is there any aspect of this technique that is complex for you? I wait for you in the comments.