According to the founder of Dicks and Betties, Steve Bryant, there are only two ways to tell your story. You can find the original article here, but we’ve summarised the key points of the article below.
On getting attention
Brands do not want attention, primarily they want revenue. A brand acquires revenue by selling its products. However, in order to sell their product, they must first get people to pay attention to their product. So by default, every brand is in the business of getting attention before it gets revenue.
The only way to get attention is to tell stories and there are only really two ways to tell stories – Tell your story, or, get others to tell your story.
Getting others to tell your story
The challenge: Storytellers want to tell the brands story in their own way.
The opportunity: Storytellers have large audiences. Storytellers have large audiences because their stories cater to their audiences’ needs and aspirations. Their audience cares and wants to hear the storyteller’s story. When others tell your story, you rent their audiences’ trust.
Telling your story to others
The challenge: When you tell your own story you have control of that story, however you reach a smaller audience. Instead of understanding your audience you are asking your audience to understand you.
The opportunity: When you tell your own story you create trust with your smaller audience. Trust over time equals a growing audience. But there is no trust without consistency.
The third way
We said up front that there are only two ways. But actually, there’s a third way. Don’t tell your story at all. Tell your audience a story about themselves. Tell a story about an aspirational topic that exists between you and your audience that is born out of mutual interest.
This is how Vanity Fair or WIRED works. Editors who are experts in their field, tell stories about the topics that they are experts in, to an audience who are already interested in those topics. For Editors, these topics are an expression of their expertise, while for the audience these topics are an expression of their aspirations.
An example of this is how Google is in the business of selling information, and Google’s Think Quarterly covers the future of marketing.
By being customized to your interest, Facebook and Instagram work in the exact same way. They are interested in telling you stories that you are interested in.
That’s where influencer marketing finds its sweet spot between creators and brands. Mutual interest between brand and audience, in a story, told by a credible creator. So, pay attention to the stories people want to hear. There’s money in that banana stand.
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