We all have competitors. And let’s face it, they’re probably offering very similar quality, products and services to you. So what’s your brand differentiator? How do you get your brand and products to lead the way like the Pied Piper? Well, therein lies the clue. With storytelling.

Using storytelling puts you one, two or maybe even three steps ahead. Why? Because you’re capturing imaginations, imprinting emotion and recall into the hearts and minds of your target and creating preference and long-term loyalty. That’s a lot to expect from a story, right?

Here’s why it works.

Our brains still operate in a primitive way. For thousands of years we’ve used stories to connect and teach, and that’s how they still work. When we hear stories, our fascination, curiosity, engagement and imagination grows. They inspire and influence us. Simple.

Storytelling affects our brains in four ways:

1/ Neural Coupling
When we hear a story, we tune into it and add on our own ideas and experiences.

2/ Mirroring
When we’re listening to stories, we’ll experience similar brain activity to each other and the speaker.

3/ Dopamine
Dopamine is released into our system when we experience an emotionally charged event or story. This makes it easier for us to remember the details.

4/ Cortex Activity
When we engage in a story our brains light up. We activate as many as five different areas. In contrast, when we’re listening to facts, only two areas are activated.

It’s evident that stories affect us, but how much do they influence our buying behaviour? In order to find out, Hill Holliday’s consumer research arm, Origin, conducted a series of experiments and the results were clear. The value of a product is perceived to be higher when accompanied by a story rather than a simple description.

The study was conducted with a sample of 3000 online participants 23 – 65 years of age, balanced by age, gender and region in the U.S.

They compared hotel rooms, one advertised with a standard description and another with a picture and story from someone who had stayed in the hotel. The room with the story was perceived to be worth 5% more.

With identical pieces of art, one was simply shown with the image of the painting, the title and artists name and the other accompanied by the artist’s personal story. The painting with the artist’s story was deemed to be worth 11% more.

Fish shaped spoons were listed on e-bay with a brief description. The same spoons were then listed with a short story by an award-wining poet. The listing with the fiction attracted 64% higher bids.

The takeaway? We love stories. We’re wired for them. Your ability to tell a story for your brand is a competitive advantage. It would be crazy not to use it.

If you’d like Red Candy’s assistance with your brand, visit our website for more info or email info@redcandy.com.au