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Storytime lands in B2B

Are you sitting comfortably? Then I’ll begin...

How many of you remember being captivated by such words, or similar, at the start of a good old story? And chances are, you not only remember most of those stories but have also passed them on to others too. Storytelling is nothing new – it’s an age-old tradition that preceeds almost all other methods of communication. 

However, it’s only now that we’re starting to see it being leveraged as a lucrative marketing technique in B2B, which is what this month’s cover story explores. Finally, B2B brands are realising that people are bored with sales messages – no matter how spectacular the product or service. 

I can personally vouch for the power of storytelling. Send me a press release laden with brand narcissm, dull paragraphs about USPs and long hyperlinks from a company I may or may not be familiar with, and I’ll promptly hit the delete button – most likely before I’ve even got half-way through it. I don’t care how ‘innovating’ the new service proclaims to be or how exclusive the news. It really doesn’t make me feel special.

But think of a decent opener or cool hook, weave something unexpected into the news, make me laugh or boggle my brain with something extraordinary, and you’ll not only make me remember you above other brands, but I’ll then save you some effort of further marketing by sharing the story myself among my own audience – be it professional or personal. 

And don’t forget, image-based marketing, e.g videos, animation and captivating pictures (not polished catalogue shots, sorry!) can make a big splash too – what are they, if not the perfect kind of storytelling prop? 

Good storytelling is about forgeting who you are and why you’re so important, and focusing on telling the most engaging tale you can imagine. It shouldn’t be difficult if you truly believe in your message.