Collect all six C’s of brand storytelling

At Lessing-Flynn, we consider ourselves to be the stewards of brand storytelling. Sure, other labels apply: account managers, copywriters, art directors, PR specialists, web designers, social media maestros, voracious consumers of sandwiches, etc. But first and foremost, we focus on brand storytelling.

We serve businesses from a bevy of industries and partner with organizations advocating exceptional causes. No two brands provide the same products and services or champion identical issues. Similarly, the opportunities and resources available to our clients differ greatly.

There is, however, one commonality among all of our brands: They all have interesting stories to tell. And it’s our job to tell these tales in a way that resonates with customers and stakeholders alike.

What’s the secret to good brand storytelling? You’ll soon find out.

The Six Cs of Brand Storytelling

Captains

Having a powerful central figure gives your story a protagonist. Someone to root for. These are the entrepreneurs, the visionaries and the innovators. The story of Apple will be forever linked to Steve Jobs. So, too, is the story of Walt Disney Studios permanently tied to Walt Disney. Facebook and Mark Zuckerberg. Microsoft and Bill Gates. The list goes on and on.

At Lessing-Flynn, we channel the energy of our namesakes: Paul Lessing and Roy Flynn. Does your organization have a protagonist that has the power to rally clients and onlookers alike? They’re the secret to playing the long game. Not to brag, but we’ve been around since 1907.

Culture

Raise your hand if you know who Larry Page and Sergey Brin are. Not ringing a bell? Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin are great visionaries and entrepreneurs, but neither is a very compelling central figure. That’s why few people consider Page and Brin to be the essence of Google.

When your company has no face, lean on culture. By investing in state-of-the-art facilities, product development and employee happiness, Google has fostered an almost mythical culture. It’s a fun, exciting and wondrous place where extraordinary things happen. A modern-day Wonka Chocolate Factory. Obviously, no company is Google. But companies that heavily invest in upgrading facilities, developing great products and keeping employees happy typically have good cultures. 

Customer Service

What company doesn’t champion its unyielding commitment, dedication and devotion, and absolute customer satisfaction?

Buzzwords, much? Indeed, that kind of corporate rubbish appears on just about every About Us page on the web. Truth be told, few brands walk the walk. Those are the companies that get talked about. Go above and beyond for your brands, and they will rush to social media in order to sing your brand name’s praises. In other words, it’s your customer base and brands who must tell the story of your great customer service for you. So give them a reason to.

Capacity

Size, scope and structure matter. Having the largest parts inventory, the most extensive dealer network, the most product specialists, the largest facilities … the biggest, dopest Chinese finger trap.

Your company invested heavily in putting the right talent, resources, infrastructure and Chinese finger traps in place. If it’s worth investing in, it’s worth talking about. Talk about what makes your company the company.

Customers

Your company can throw cash money at a celebrity spokesperson, but such endorsements are often undermined by the fact everyone knows they’ve been bought and paid for.

Consumers are smart enough to know Kylie Jenner probably doesn’t eat Burger King on a regular basis. But when Microsoft Surface Pro started using their commercials to showcase how real illustrators and artists use their product, credibility grew. Microsoft reported a 21% year-on-year rise in Surface sales last year. Few things are more powerful than the testimonials of real people. How have your products and services helped your customers and who among them are willing to tell their story?

Consume a Sandwich

After you’re done crafting the perfect story for your brand, take some time to relax, reflect and consume a sandwich. Just because Kylie Jenner doesn’t eat Whoppers and Impossible Burgers doesn’t mean you can’t.

Storytelling is a learned art, but all it takes is some practice. Think about what aspects of your brand are most factually important but also have the largest emotional appeal. Using your sharpened brand storytelling skills, go out and make people care.

This was originally written June 4, 2013, but brand storytelling is timeless! Tell it with authority this year.