Brand Storytelling seems like a strange concept for a small business to care about, but it’s designed specifically for you. In essence, it’s about giving your business unique authority in your marketplace by addressing marketing and business development concepts you might never have thought of and making sure they are operating in perfect harmony. This is more difficult, and it’s more difficult for marketers you employ, but the marketing industry is lousy with scammers and we’re here to help.
Running marketing piecemeal is a recipe for failure, so to make your business succeed here’s where you need to get your headspace at:
1). Your Business Must be Willing to Experiment
Broke people think “how much up front and how much per month?” Rich people think: “how much?” The point being: you need to keep the whole endeavor in perspective and understand that success will require a period up-front investment to build up to success later. This is especially true if you’re trying a new digital campaign and a heavier spend on the front end helps build the data necessary to optimize in a shorter amount of time. You need to time to learn and test. If you’re trying to get into brand storytelling and thinking revolutionary, you need to prepare for a period of flux rather than pivoting every week.
2). Your Business Must Master Self-Awareness
Your business cannot merely be something you are good at and you are passionate about. That’s a great place to start, but that is just the first step. The second step is to figure out why you do what you do, why you are passionate, and why people should care about you.
I worked in startups for years, helping launch clever businesses with a lot of momentum and working for startup incubators. The one thing that sticks out to me is this: nobody understands what the Minimum Viable Product is. Whatever your big idea is, strip it down to its most essential existence.
Are you the best at everything, or the best at one very specific thing? Like what Twitter did. You hate Twitter, right? So do I. Let’s learn why.
3). Your Business Must Embrace Authority Over Mimicry
The biggest mistake that businesses make is they look at what their competitors are doing, and they try to emulate it. It is very easy to get locked into a follower mentality this way, and you end up searching for gurus who will tell you how to catch up.
You do not need marketing gurus. Nobody does. You do not need to follow trends to stay above water.
You will never defeat your enemy by following their tactics, especially if they are in your own marketplace. This is where branding and creative strategy is essential, and the primary rule is to avoid familiar trends. Playing catch-up is a surefire way to stay uncompetitive.
4). Your Business Must Think Long Term
Do not look for a standalone campaign or advertising push to solve your revenue problem. You need a One-Year plan for success, at least. That isn’t to say you won’t start seeing results in the short term, but proper marketing is like throwing a punch: you need to think about the follow-through, not just where you want it to land. Too many businesses attempt SEO, content, PPC, social media, or anything else hoping for a fast miracle because they’re in an emergency. Some will promise they can accomplish. They are liars.
5). Your Business Must Often Revolutionize
Good marketing is good business development. In Lean Management, one of the primary concerns is eliminating waste by streamlining processes. There’s probably a half a dozen ways you are losing revenue right now by wasting time while getting your customers served or having the onboarding process too complicated. I bet you can think of a few ways off the top of your head you are wasting time in your day right now.
You must adapt a mentality to make your business as simple, customer-focused, and systematic as possible. This will make everything easier, especially for you.
6). Your Business Must Traffic in Trust
The goal of every small business is to get their customers to trust them. This leads to good reviews, referrals, a good standing in the community, and ultimately a legacy. You are passionate about what you do, you put everything on the line to bring it to the world, and you live or die based on your reputation. Brand Storytelling is designed to amplify this. It is a unification of marketing strategies – digital, traditional, social, content, PR, everything – designed to make your mark in a rapidly evolving world. With trust, you can combat big names pricing you out. With trust, you can combat competitors. With trust. With trust, you can weather all storms.
The thing that gets me up in the morning is: if I tell people how to do marketing and make my job obsolete, I’ve done my job right. Maybe I did my job today.