Why The Brand Must Be The Story

Why The Brand Must Be The Story

Tom Peters on why brands must create a narrative worth telling.

Paloma M. Vazquez
  • 7 september 2010

A recent post from BBH Labs turned our attention to a short video clip from management consultant Tom Peters, in which he discusses his perspective on how storytelling isn’t just a marketing hot topic of the day, but rather something that is in our genes as human beings – we translate everything that happens to us in life into stories. If we communicate this way amongst each other as people, why should it be any different when brands speak to consumers?

Peters makes two very clear points in this short clip, directed very specifically at brands and the communications agencies working on their behalf:

1) The story is more powerful than the brand: When crafting a message, the story should come first, and the brand second. Ideally, the brand should BE the story – if there is no story worth telling in the brand’s vision, practices, or past – then the brand must create it.

2) The best story wins: Focus on the quality of your story first. Turn that complex idea you’ve concepted into a story you can recount more simply.

We appreciated Peters’ message for the simplicity of its implications to brands – as human beings, we communicate by telling stories – these become the most memorable messages. If a brand wants that same recognition and place in consumers’ minds and hearts, they must learn to speak in the same way – even if what they perceive to be as the ‘brand message’ takes a backseat to a more interesting, compelling brand story that consumers will actually want to recount.

[via BBH Labs]

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