stephanie granado, lead of copy and storytelling at the 3rd eye agency, smiling next to a title saying: what is brand storytelling? going beyond copy

What is Brand Storytelling? and Why It Matters

Published By: Stephanie Granado
May 16, 2023

Brand storytelling is exactly what it sounds like: using narratives to communicate a brand’s identity, values, and purpose to its audience.

Its intent is to create an emotional connection between a brand and its customers through a relatable and compelling story. People are more likely to remember a story than a list of facts or features. By sharing stories, brands can create a more engaging and memorable impact on their audiences.

Effective brand storytelling requires a company’s deep understanding of the target audience and their values, as well as the ability to craft a story that resonates with them. When done well, brand storytelling can help build a loyal customer base, differentiate a brand from competitors, and drive sales.

When most people think of storytelling they immediately think–copywriting. But connecting people to ideas through words is just copy.

Storytelling is about weaving together both art and copy. There are even instances where you can tell an entire story without saying a single word. Powerful visual storytelling is capable of taking your audience on a journey that resonates with them deeply by showing, not telling–allowing them to simply feel.

A powerful brand story compels action—and for brands, consumer action is how you measure success.

How do you frame a brand’s story arc to engage with your audience and take them on a journey?

It’s all about having a deep understanding of a brand’s identity. I need to know a brand’s purpose or mission – What motivates the brand? What problem does it solve for the customers? For me, this is the foundation of a brand’s story arc. Before I start framing the story arc, I deep dive into the audience to understand who we are trying to reach with. Understanding the target audience is a crucial piece in crafting a story arc that resonates with them.

My next step is to work at establishing or understanding a brand’s identity. The brand is the main character, and compelling characters bring every great story to life. I spend a lot of time developing or understanding the brand’s personality, values, and voice—and make sure they align with the purpose and target audience.

The point of a brand story is to connect with the audience throughout the storytelling process. So using language and messaging that resonates with them is key. To do that, I have to know who they are, how they speak, and what they’re talking about. Once I do, I can set the brand up to engage their audience authentically.

How do you get started when conceptualizing a brand’s story?

Do your research.

You can’t tell a brand’s story without a clear understanding of a brand’s identity. Start by learning the brand’s story–the history, values, and mission. You need to understand what led to its creation and what sets it apart from competitors.

Understand your audience.

To engage with your audience, you need to understand who they are, what they want, and what motivates them. There is a fair share of research in this part of the process. Between the internet and social media, you can dive deep to get the inside scoop on your audience, develop customer personas, get a better understanding of your audience’s needs, and really understand the culture/sub-culture of the audience you’re trying to engage.

Engage your audience.

Invite your audience to participate. With the evolution of social media, no one wants a brand talking at them. This is now a conversation, with your audience as active members and willing participants of your community. Encourage user-generated content, share customer stories, and create interactive experiences that allow your audience to be a part of your brand’s journey. This strengthens the community and helps build loyalty among your audience—creating brand advocates in the process.

See What is the Creator Economy? 4 Things Healthcare Brands Need to Know for tips on unique ways to engage your target market.

Create the narrative.

Use storytelling to make your brand’s story engaging and relatable. Focus on the emotions and experiences that resonate with your audience, and create content that supports and reinforces that. Product launches, milestones, or events are great opportunities to engage. You’re not only sharing your journey and your brand’s story with your audience, but you’re incorporating them into that story. So, share those stories in social media posts, highlight your customer testimonials, and give examples that showcase the brand from the audience’s POV.

Be consistent

Make sure that your brand’s story is consistent across all your marketing channels. From your website to social media, ensure that your brand’s narrative is consistent, clear, and compelling. This doesn’t mean that you slap the same creative or line everywhere (nuance is important), but you don’t want to veer from the story you’re telling.

Once you get through concepting, what’s the secret sauce to making that brand story a successful one?

Authenticity. And that comes from equally knowing your brand and your audience. Keeping the conversation open and engaging with your brand’s community through social media, blogs, email marketing, and other channels drives success because you gain a front row seat to how your audience is responding to the story. Ask for feedback and listen to what they have to say and use it to improve the brand story and stay connected to the audience.

After a brand has their story, how can they elevate that story to continue capturing their audience and connecting with them as they evolve?

Evolve the story

A powerful story is one that evolves, continuing to connect with the audience on an emotional level. As the brand grows and changes, update the story accordingly to reflect those changes. This helps keep the brand relevant and relatable. 

Offer new experiences

Create experiences that allow your audience to interact with the brand in different ways, offering new experiences keeps your audience engaged and excited about the brand.

Stay dynamic

Don’t limit your story to just one platform. Use video, audio, images, and other mediums to tell your brand story in different ways. This helps not only capture the attention of different audience segments, but it also keeps the brand story fresh and interesting.

Keep an eye on the competition.

Compelling brand stories are everywhere. Look for ways to differentiate your brand story and stay ahead of the curve. By doing this, you can continue to capture your audience’s attention and stay connected with them as the brand evolves.

When pitching to a client, what’s the most important element to keep in mind to hook them and capture their attention from the beginning?

Do your research. Before the pitch, research the client and competitors. Know who will be in the room–this helps you tailor your pitch to their specific needs and interests so what you’re saying resonates with them. Keep your pitch brief, be concise and to the point. Focus on the most important information and avoid overwhelming the client.

This is a pitch, part of the sell is you– show your expertise. Be confident, get in there and show them what you’re capable of. Demonstrate your experience and show how your idea can help solve their problem. Emphasize the strategy behind your idea, not just the executions.

Ask for feedback and engage them in the conversation. Show that you value their input and are committed to finding a solution that meets their needs.


Great stories don’t just stimulate brain activity, they have that je ne sais quoi that make us feel heard & understood.

Creating an authentic, consistent, and engaging brand story that generates an emotional response from your audience may take some trial and error—but it’s always worth it. Once you hit that sweet spot with an audience who loves what your brand represents, growth comes easily.

Need help creating your brand’s story or fine-tuning an existing one? Connect with us and we’ll get you started.

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