ad:tech 2019 started on a high note with a spirited session from David Freeman, the Executive Vice President of Star India, who spoke about the importance of emotional stakes in the marketing strategies of today. This point was illustrated in an innovative manner when he directed the audience to shake the hand of a person they didn’t know and talk about a unique aspect of their life.
This abstract yet enlightening exercise helped put a unique point into context – human beings are capable of something that no other species is capable of; storytelling. It’s the dawn of mankind that has brought about the age of storytelling as we know it, and it’s through these stories that various feelings and emotions are elicited within people.
However, storytelling is not a limited aspect. If anything, it’s a broad aspect that can be utilised in a manner that’s become quite popular in the commercial space – marketing.
With digital marketing quickly becoming the norm, it’s important to understand that attention spans are dwindling more and more. Therefore, to ensure that little to no problems come in the way of a brand’s marketing initiatives, storytelling should be integrated throughout a particular campaign to maximise engagement and accrue substantial results.
We say this because – as discussed above – storytelling is a medium that invokes emotions. Using this strategy in a marketing initiative and induce the appropriate feelings can go a long way in ensuring the runaway success of any marketing campaign.
In the simplest terms, stories should provide desirable experiences that make consumers crave a particular product or service.
A great way to illustrate this point would be to talk about the success story of Dollar Shave Club. At a glance, the products of a shaving company might not seem all that interesting. This was a challenge for the company – how exactly could they tell a story with something so seemingly pedestrian like male grooming products.
The company’s offerings itself communicate two crucial messages:
- The name Dollar Shave Club should be enough to hint towards the fact that the products are economical, therefore removing any financial barriers to entry.
- Since these products are delivered to your doorstep with little to no effort, there’s also a level of convenience attached to these offerings.
This messaging is further augmented through their quirky marketing campaign that conveyed the following:
- Everyone relates to comedy, and Dollar Shave Club managed to accomplish precisely that with a marketing campaign kept humour at the forefront of its messaging.
- A brand that’s portrays itself as rebellious will be more appealing to young men – a demographic that Dollar Shave Club targets.
- Michael Dubin – the founder of Dollar Shave Club – portrayed himself as a warm and friendly individual, further helping consumers relate to the brand at large.
Dollar Shave Club is not the only brand that has adopted a story-heavy marketing approach – Nike also took the bold decision of using Colin Kaepernick as a figurehead to carry out a personalised marketing campaign.
What does all of this illustrate? It shows that empathy is essential for a brand. Without this aspect, all brands are doing is selling the same-old product or service that won’t resonate with the consumer. It’s only when consumers can attach a sense of emotion to these offerings through a story-driven marketing campaign that brands can improve the results they accrue through these strategies.