Brand narrative is what it sounds like: an organization’s story of who it is and what it does. It should be compelling, connecting with customers through sharing the company’s mission and why people should care about it. However, brand narrative does more than simply sharing what your company does. A good narrative can transform your business.
An advertising professional’s story: Ryan Kutscher’s journey
Ryan Kutscher, founder and Chief Creative Officer of the advertising agency Circus Maximus, understands this first-hand. Ryan stumbled upon the career of helping brands tell their stories largely on accident. Having just dropped out of business school while in his third year of college, he took an advertising course that changed the rest of his life. From that class, his new-found passion led him to advertising internships, ad school, and eventually the opportunity to create his own agency.
Brand narrative and why it’s important
Ryan believes that defining your brand narrative is what turns your brand into an organization. “Do not run your brand with the ‘invisible corporate Ouija board’ method,” he says. This is where the brand mission isn’t clearly communicated, but rather everyone in the business goes with the flow without a sense of direction. No one quite knows what’s guiding them or where they are headed. People outside the business won’t be fooled, and if the organization’s own members are confused, so will potential consumers. Lack of clarity will also make it difficult for business-to-business transactions. Fairly speaking, it is difficult for other corporations to do business with a company they fail to understand. Conversely, when an organization’s brand narrative is clear and interesting, it drives inbound interest, makes the company sharable, creates organizational clarity, attracts more engaged employees, and stands out to customers through natural attention-grabbing storytelling. A uniquely interesting brand narrative can also lower ad costs. When creating novelty for your product, it helps you stand out and drives consumer engagement, meaning people will begin marketing for you by word of mouth or through liking and sharing content. All in all, it makes running the business more fun.
How to create a great brand narrative: catering to your audience
It’s clear then that brand narrative is important, but even more necessary than knowing why it is needed is figuring out how to identify the best brand narrative for your business. Furthermore, it’s helpful to know how to take a brand narrative from good to great. For the most success, it’s important to maximize clarity. Ryan recommends, define your goals and your audience, and be clear about your desired outcome. When it comes to goals, what is the purpose of the brand narrative? Should the advertising spread awareness about an issue, or should it prompt a direct response from the consumer? Whatever the desired outcome, the brand narrative should clearly define what it hopes to accomplish and aim to cater to a specific group of people.
Another tip Ryan has for effectively defining your brand narrative is to keep it simple and relatable. Ryan says, “Simple, not complex. Emotional, not rational. Human motivations, not corporate motivations. A simple, compelling, human-centric narrative is key.” Ryan’s own company utilizes this rule when helping clients. “At [Circus Maximus], we specialize in simplifying complex value props and striking a human chord with our brand narrative and content work.”
A third piece of advice is to embrace diversity. Keeping with a diverse agency culture will add authenticity to your marketing. Consider the market you are working in when it comes to writing scripts for advertisements. As an example, Hispanic families often don’t call their mother “Mom,” but rather “Mami.” When making commercials, this is something you will want to revisit and check even after casting talents. In case you didn’t know, “Diversity is key to modern marketing,” Ryan says. It’s something worth making sure you get right.
Ryan also has a tip for knowing how the brand narrative is a “good” idea for the company. Ryan explains, “You’ll know it’s right when instead of feeling like you’re pushing, you’re being pulled by the power of this organizing idea.” If you feel like you’re forcing an idea to work, keep searching for a better fit. It likely isn’t right for your business.
Brand narrative is important for a variety of reasons. To be effective, it should be clear, simple, relatable, and authentic. It should never be confusing or feel forced. When applied well, it can strengthen your company internally and externally, and leading the business will be much more enjoyable. To learn more about brand narrative or find advertising assistance, consider reaching out to Ryan Kutscher through social media, or contact Circus Maximus at https://www.circusmaximus.com/contact.
Ryan Kutscher, Founder and Chief Creative Officer of the advertising agency Circus Maximus, is known for his wealth of knowledge and experience in advertising. He can be followed on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn. More information about Circus Maximus is available on their website at https://www.circusmaximus.com/, or via LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/company/circus-maximus/.