Four reasons your business stories fail (and how to make them better)
This article originally appeared on The Drum, read more here.
Delivering content is the setback of many successful business plans. In an internet concfilled with eye-grabbing websites and engaging content, expectation is high and attention-span is short. How do you provide practitioners with the information they need, whilst keeping your story appealing?
Esri UK, a provider of Geographic Information Systems (GIS), have assembled a whitepaper explaining the four reasons businesses fail to engage other businesses through stories.
You’re playing the hero
Advertising your agency’s success is no difficult task; listing your success is the easy bit. Advertising your services and how you can create success for your clients is where many agencies fall short, and this is the only thing businesses are looking for.
With relatively few exceptions to the rule, most people do not care about your company or its unique history. They are not interested in your success. What they are interested in is their own success and how you can make that happen.
Many brands spend considerable amounts of time and money creating stories that put them right in the centre. The most important thing to remember when B2B storytelling: you are not the hero of the story. Your customers and prospects are.
Don’t tell your story, tell theirs.
You are boring
With a vast internet filled with catchy slogans, your client is just a click away from moving onto a competitor’s website. Spend a little time making your stories enjoyable experiences. Providing prospects with dull experiences is setting you up to lose client interest.
Look at how you are presenting your content. Are you expecting people to slog through 2000 unformatted words or are you actually engaging with them? Design, imagery and video can all bring a story to life, and with the rise of storytelling technology platforms, all marketers are now able to create something memorable.
You’re afraid of data
Data is the B2B story teller’s best friend. It can help you decide which stories your audience may be interested in, assess the success your previous offerings have met with and it provides the foundation for the creation of engaging visualisations.
Because content marketers are more concerned with letters than numbers, these benefits are lost. Ignoring data’s incredibly important role in content marketing can force your brand to fall short on engaging information and potential clients. Force yourself to acknowledge your numbers’ existence: they may well breathe new life into your marketing performance.
Even the most wonderfully crafted story can get lost amongst the masses if it is not shared across platforms; in the age of digital marketing, no one is going to come and check your site just in in case you left something out that they might like.
There are many different ways you can do this: E-mail, social media, DM, – all other stories are spreading across these and yours will be lost sharing is not utilised.
If you are looking long term – and you should be – it may even be worth mapping out a campaign that allows your story to twist, turn and develop over time.
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