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The art of storytelling in B2B Marketing

Storytelling is one of the most powerful tools in the belt of any marketer. Stories are traditionally how we share knowledge, beliefs and experiences. As a story is always more engaging than mere facts and stats, our brains are hardwired to remember them better.

Storytelling can evoke an emotional response, awake imagination and remind clients and customers that, at heart, we are all human. Telling a story makes your brand up to 22 times more memorable than merely hitting hard with statistics.

As B2B marketers, we sometimes forget that stories are just as relevant for us as they are to any consumer brand. Your brand story – the ‘whys’ and ‘hows’ of your business – is probably one of the most important tales you can tell, but storytelling can be a powerful way to get your solutions message across too.

When we were working on a campaign for a large printing manufacturer, we created a character, Claire, and told her story. We all know a Claire – the person everyone turns to when they need to know ‘How do I…?’, or ‘Where can I find…?’.

For this campaign, instead of talking about features and benefits, sheet feeders and toner, we told the story of the impact our client’s solutions had on Claire’s busy working day as an office manager – saving time here, reducing stress there, and generally making her life easier.


We had great fun creating scenarios and characters and, with the team at Global Fire Creative turning those into impactful videos, compelling visuals and a complete partner enablement kit. Then, together with our friends at Digital Clarity, we proved that telling a great story could translate directly into lead conversions.

In the world of technology, it’s easy to forget the power and resonance a story can have. We’re really proud of the campaign and the impact it had. It broke some boundaries for our client and reinforced the power of storytelling.

How to tell a story

Characters

Who are the main players? Whether your story features you, your team, fictional characters or a cartoon dinosaur, you’ll need to decide on your protagonists. And make sure they’re likeable – your audience needs to engage with your hero!

Genre

Are you planning to tell a dramatic tale, keep your audience in suspense, or make ‘em laugh? Whatever your direction, do align to your brand values, or it will feel off the mark.

Storyline

What’s going to happen to your hero? The dramatic rule of “crisis – climax – resolution” stands here. What crisis could your solution help to resolve for your main character(s)? Make sure you explore their difficulties to allow your audience to engage and empathise, before they reach the climax of finding your product. Then the resolution – paint a picture of a better world, and a happier character, now they’re using your solution!

Medium

Will you use video, animation, a podcast, a virtual picture book, a blog…? There are many creative options, so choose the one (or ones) that best suit your brand and solution, and, crucially, will be most likely to appeal to your intended audience.

Emotion

How are you going to capture your reader’s attention? It’s important to remember what kind of emotion you’re trying to evoke in your reader, and then make sure your story elicits those strong emotional bonds that will make readers want to see it through.

Realistic Change

What are you trying to prove to your reader? Stories within marketing tend to try to motivate sales, and they aren’t fictional, they’re realistic and achievable. Describe your protagonist’s core struggles, narrate their wins and losses and most importantly, shout about the end-results.

Our storytelling campaigns have been some of the most successful programmes we’ve run, and we’ve had so much fun working on every single one.

We love to get creative – so let’s talk about your story. Tell us your ideas and we’ll bring them to life – for you, and for your customers!