Content marketing and storytelling are often considered to be the same. But the fact is, they are not! While content marketing is like an entity on its own, storytelling is only a part of it.
B2C brands have been using storytelling as a part of their marketing strategy for years. Now, B2B brands have joined the wagon too. Even though B2B storytelling comes off as a commercialized concept, it is getting to be translated as something that is helping brands connect with their audience on a deeper level.
Let’s have a look at this topic in a little more detail.
Significance of Storytelling in B2B Marketing
In 2021 humans are going to relate to stories more than ever which is why B2B brand storytelling is one of the best bets for marketers. Here are some major reasons why you should make B2B storytelling a part of your strategy.
Builds Familiarity with The Brand
One of the first advantages of B2B storytelling is that it makes your brand more relatable to your target audience (TA). When you portray a story that not only reflects the benefits of your offering but also gives the audience an element to feel the need for that’s when the relatability is formed.
Fosters Customer Loyalty
Another reason to include storytelling in B2B marketing is to develop customer loyalty for your brand. When the audience realizes that your brand is offering much more than a product or service, they voluntarily start trusting your brand. Your willingness to offer a valued product or service fosters customer loyalty to a great extent.
Distinguishes Your Business
B2B storytelling is a relatively new concept in the business to the business sector. This is why you grab every opportunity of creating a story that’s worth telling and interesting for your TA. You might offer something similar to what your competitors offer but when you present a story that depicts your offering, that’s when you stand out!
Medium of Communication
The importance of storytelling in marketing is increasingly growing also because it is a simple yet unique medium of communication. When your brand’s story covers something important to your prospects it initiates a conversation and thus becomes a topic of discussion. This gives rise to various dialogues between you and your audience.
Humanizes Brand Stories
We all agree that AI is transforming content marketing in the business sector. But the touch that B2B storytelling brings to a marketing campaign is exceptional. Even if you portray just the benefits of your brand through the story but the elements that a well-written story has humanizes your brand as a whole and makes it real.
Directs Decision Making
Most officials working in the B2B sector are not easy to deal with. The purpose of B2B storytelling is to convince these decision-making authorities about why you they should invest in your brand. Whenever decision-makers come across something that is done for the first time, it is ought to affect their decision-making process.
Essential Components of B2B Storytelling
Ideally, when you present your story to the prospects there should be a set pattern for it. Something relatable and exclusive to your brand. Deck 7 has listed out 3 primary components to making your B2B storytelling stint successful.
First and the most important component that your story should cover is the problems faced by your audience. Without a problem statement, the entire point of B2B storytelling is lost and becomes vague. Including the challenges of your TA lays down a clear plot of what your story is going to talk about.
The next element that your story should have are the possible solutions available for the problems. Listing the solutions puts your prospects in a better place and makes them aware of multiple answers to their questions. Giving multiple options increases the importance of B2B storytelling.
Resolutions Matching Requirements
The third and equally important component of B2B storytelling which is also highly relevant for the year 2021 due to changing market scenarios is giving the exact resolution of the problems that your prospect is trying to solve. When you do this, your audience is impressed not only buy the effort you’ve put in to give an excellent solution but also by the sheer amount of industry knowledge you possess.
B2B Storytelling Tips to Implement
Once you’ve figured out that you want to include B2B storytelling in your marketing plan, you could implement these tips to make your stories better and more relatable.
Tell Fact-Based Stories
B2B storytelling is not just about disclosing facts, but most of it is! Because when you provide an authorized backing to the figure or strategies your present, your audience realizes that you know what you are talking about. It enhances your image and sometimes, you can even get to be known as the industry expert.
Make Use of Visuals
Effective storytelling for businesses will always have visuals in their story representations. Since it’s a known fact that images and visuals have more real value than plain text, it is always better to keep the least amount of text and more graphics to present your story.
Portray Stories from Within Your Organization
Prospects are always interested in knowing what goes behind making a product or service available in the market. This is why B2B storytelling must also include an element that showcases the stories of your employees and all the key members who are important for your brand. This makes your brand appear real and more human.
Cover Customer Experiences
A good content marketing story will cover customer experiences. When you use various content syndication methods to increase your readership, using customer testimonials, and crafting a story out of it is an excellent option. Covering past customer reviews is probably the best way to build loyalty for your brand.
Top B2B Brand Storytelling Formats
B2B storytelling can be done in a lot of ways. But you need to decide what suits your brand and how you want to present your story. Check out some popular formats below.
One way to enhance your B2B storytelling process in 2021 is to present it in an audio slideshow format. Using this format helps you recite your story in the way you want it to reflect and along with that providing images and graphics that are suitable to your story.
Infographics are another storytelling format that could come in handy if it suits your business requirement. This format in general is popular in showcasing the progress made, strategies used, and market trends. Infographics give you a chance to present your brand story in a short yet informative manner.
The effect of storytelling is much higher when you use the testimonial video format. This presentation is crucial as it backs all the good things you say about your brand since your past customers are there to testify to it. Testimonial videos are undoubtedly one of the most popular B2B storytelling formats.
Ways to Use B2B Brand Storytelling for Conversions
By now we know how important B2B storytelling is for a modern business strategy like content marketing especially in 2021. But did you know it could be also used to convert customers? Here’s how you could do it.
Develop a Content Strategy Around Storytelling
B2B storytelling can be used for customer conversion by drafting a content strategy that supports it. Whichever format you select to present your brand story, you need to make sure to seamlessly blend it into the content strategy that you plan to execute. By doing this you can add an element like storytelling that will complement your content strategy.
Leverage from a Popular Story
The audience has become extremely careful about what they consume on the internet. Right from shows to ads, they become very selective about the content they watch. Hence to make sure your B2B storytelling a success you need to shape your story in a way that relates to another popular story. This will increase the recall value of your brand's story.
Start a Conversation
B2B storytelling is all about starting a dialogue with your consumers. When you present a story that involves a social message you need to make sure that it hits your audience at the right spot and compels them to make a conversation with you.
Offer a Creative Voice
Creativity never goes out of style. So, make sure your story is as creative as possible to attract your prospect’s attention. With a unique, creative voice of your brand, you depict how artistic you can be and thus convert.
Pay Attention to Customer Emotions
When you consider customer emotions while implementing B2B storytelling your chances of going wrong are bleak. Craft a story that creates positivity and covers the emotions of your prospects in the right manner.
Track and Analyse Response
Your customer in B2B storytelling is the only one whom you should focus on. As much as your brand’s story is about you, it should be about them too. Only then will they be able to relate to it and thus get attracted to your brand and everything that you have to offer.
The significance of B2B marketing is well known by all. But with B2B storytelling becoming increasingly popular in 2021, the entire marketing process now has a new value to it. With the tips and hacks provided above presenting your brand story is going to be a lot easier and more exciting. On another note, if you are looking for some of the best content services in the market, Deck 7 is the company to look out for. Contact us now!
Frequently Asked Questions
Why is storytelling important for B2B in 2021?
B2B storytelling is going to gain a lot of importance in 2020. Some of the significances include:
- Builds Familiarity with The Brand
- Customer Loyalty
- Distinguishes Your Business
- Medium of Communication
- Humanizes Brand Stories
- Opportunity to Connect and Collaborate
- Improves Imagination
- Affects Thoughts
- Directs Decision Making
Why does storytelling matter in business?
B2B storytelling helps businesses connect with their audience on a deeper level. It helps brands to showcase their business story, history, and customer experiences in the most natural and real form.
What is the value of storytelling in 2021?
The significance of storytelling in 2021 is going to be much more. Because businesses have changed their way of functioning and reaching out to their audiences. Hence, the way they communicate with their audience through storytelling is going to have a new value.