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  • Dawn Pang

Human Narratives And Writing Compelling Stories

Updated: May 20



To the modern audience, public relations evokes more than a notion of branding, brief customer contact and sales. Emotions are at play here with a deeper capacity to connect us to the inanimate, breathing new life into brands with a human touch. Modern technologies are seen as essentially lifeless, made of metal and steel, however they are very much a large driving force in our lives.


Those in branding know by heart the importance of reinventing customer-centric narratives involving the presentation of these products as beautiful solutions to our existing day-to-day problems. They are then designed and packaged into a unique identity, ready for consumption.


Let's take a vacuum cleaner as an example – a vacuum cleaner is simply an ordinary household tool. If we rewrite the narrative of the same vacuum cleaner to have been created for a happy home due to its ability to clean even the most stubborn of dirt, comes with sustainable energy consumption and produces low noise levels, it tells the audience that much thought is put into its conception thus, makes it extraordinary.


“Facts alone are rather dull, but stories can make you laugh, cry and buy”. Through sheer instinct a skilled PR practitioner seeks to disrupt the market through inspiring conversations that journalists alike would indulge. No one in the industry would have the time to entertain a half-baked story, especially when their readers are at the receiving end. Similarly, content that is lacking quality will not captivate and capture imaginations, much less influence people to act.


We live in the golden age of content, crafting a narrative for your brand has become more important than ever.


Here’s how you can tell your audience a good brand story to last a lifetime:


Plot

The concept of storytelling – We begin, we anticipate, we explore and end with an understanding.


An assembly of events, pertaining to the beginning and progress of your brand, product or service can fit into a consistent, relatable plot. Companies should not shy away from the opportunity to present stories of their brand or products; talk about your origin story, visions, ideas and even failures.


PR deals in truth and transparency with the knowledge that different audiences are moved by different things. Which is why it’s important to pay extra attention to constructing a narrative that would resonate with an intended audience while avoiding topics or subjects that would equally upset them.


Trust and Reliability

Forming deep meaningful relationships and conversations with consumers is a milestone for many successful companies.


Reliability is also essential to maintaining what was established. Companies should not solely focus on building their customers’ trust in what is offered in terms of products but should also take the time to focus on expanding on how the brand can be reliable as a whole.


This can be done through a narrative of consistent exemplary customer service, friendly communications on social media addressing any concerns and PR campaigns concentrated on the interpersonal experience between brand and consumer.


People

Just as language is action, words and stories have meaning and so do the stories that PR professionals craft. As professional communicators, public relations have the power to influence the actions of consumers by learning to understand the state of society and their interests. The PR professional is a keen observer of society and has a huge interest in people, the way they think, their likes and dislikes.


People often relate to one another through lived experiences. Brands alike are given plenty of opportunities to identify on a similar level and taylor their approaches accordingly.


Twist

Everyone loves a twist in a story.


Unpredictability can serve as a show stopper to even the dullest of narratives. With confidence, a brand may approach their story in a different light, leading to a self-discovery of potential appeal. As an example, a male-centric brand may opt to encourage women empowerment through pushing ideals that it is “manly” to support female counterparts, attracting the attention of a feminine crowd.


Crucially, stories are only effective when they are authentic and accompanied with other key elements of storytelling. They usually hold more power when supported with facts and like any strong narrative, they revolve around a clear purpose. While stories told during dinner parties seek to amuse, in business, it is better to tell stories that will make an impact.


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