Storytelling has captured the attention of audiences for thousands of years.
There is no better way to engage your customers on a personal level than by telling the story of your business, particularly using your company's digital platforms.
To run an engaging business and build brand loyalty, you need to draw in users to your company’s mission, describe a problem for which you offer a solution, and show your customers and audiences the similarities between your story and their lives.
Through both your company's website and social media platforms, for example, you can engage with your users and their stories through design elements that incorporate storytelling.
Consider the following reasons why storytelling should be a central part of your company’s brand, and use these approaches to boost engagement with your customers through your web design.
Storytelling Provides Customers With a Memorable Experience
Your business should strive to create and tell a story to give users a memorable experience when interacting with your brand. You are more likely to have users stay on your page and reach the end of your content if you are telling an engaging story. Holding the customer’s attention is the first key step to marketing your products or service.
Specifically, there are five ways storytelling can improve your user experience:
- Storytelling engages readers, allowing you to build a bond with them and appeal to their emotions and needs.
- Storytelling encourages readers to read your content by giving them a familiar structure. Readers intuitively know how stories unfold; when you include storytelling in your content, they know what to expect.
- Stories inspire users. Demonstrating what your business is all about, where you started, and how you have grown, proves you are more than a faceless corporation. Rather, you are a business with families and people who work hard just like your customers do.
- Stories add depth to your brand. Showcasing multiple sides of your business through storytelling can provide transparency, highlight successful customer relationships, and align your brand with values that resonate with users.
- Storytelling communicates to users in ways that standalone images and words cannot. Explaining business processes and navigating users through questions and solutions in story form is a uniquely effective means of communicating with customers.
Use Storytelling to Personalize Your Business
When you personalize your business, you make your people – and their daily experiences and struggles – universal. Take time to figure out what you want to share about your business. If you spent a long time building your business, share your story of climbing to success. If you offer a unique product, share why your business is different from others.
Elements of Effective Storytelling
To best engage your site readers, include each of the following three elements of effective storytelling as part of your company's brand and site design.
Appeal to Your Customers and Users
Your story should focus on customers and reinforce the idea that you created your business to serve them. You and your staff are part of the tale. Give users some insight into who you are, and offer visuals. Nothing helps move a story forward like a well-placed photo.
For example, a pictograph describing your business model can effectively provide transparency, relate to your users, and simplify your message in one step.
Allowing customers to visualize the business process that ultimately serves them helps them feel more connected to your business and provides insight that offers real value.
Include a Conflict or Problem to Solve
Every great story has some conflict. The conflict in your story could be how hard it was to get your product or service to your customers. You saw the need in your community, so you built your business to answer that need.
Include a storyboard that addresses a problem and explains the solution through corresponding imagery. For example, an FAQ section can serve as a creative way of engaging your users and optimizing their user experience. Use Twitter for example:
Address common FAQs or troubleshooting issues involving your product by introducing the conflict and resolving it as the storyboard progresses.
Explain Why You Want Your Readers to Know the Story
To create an emotional connection with your users, let them know why you are telling the story of your brand. Show them how important their business is to you and how you are always striving to serve them better.
Imagery can be a powerful tool that connects your readers to your company's missions or objectives. Encourage charitable donations or highlight a cause you support by including an image that captures the point of your message. Printsocial, for example, donates part of each one of their sales to a charitable organization of the buyer's choice.
Modern consumers are deeply invested in brand alignment with social causes. Address this part of your audience through a carefully selected image that tells its own story.
Incorporate Customers Into Your Story
One way to strengthen the storytelling of your brand on your website is to share the story of your current customers.
Give examples of how your product or service has affected your customers to get your users involved. Engagement promotes brand loyalty and increases the chances your article will be shared and seen by more people.
Social media posts are useful for visual testimonials. Visual testimonials are useful ways of involving your existing customers and telling the story of your product or service’s effectiveness. Visual testimonials, like a screenshot of an email from a satisfied customer, both shows and tells your story.
Proof of your connection is how users are connecting with you – leverage that for a compelling story. This technique gives readers a glimpse into how your business can affect their life and will encourage them to use your services.
Storytelling Encourages Connection With Your Users
Use storytelling to engage with your customers about your brand. Storytelling is a common language that everyone can relate to. Incorporating its elements into your web design and brand presence increases the chances they will want to interact with your brand and purchase your products or services.
About the Author
Stephen Moyers is an out of the heart writer voicing out his take on various topics of social media, web design, mobile apps, digital marketing, entrepreneurship, startups and much more in the cutting edge digital world. He is associated with SPINX Digital a Los Angeles web design company & digital marketing agency. When he is not writing, he can be found traveling outdoors with his camera. You can follow Stephen on Twitter @StephenMoyers