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“What do you do?” How common is that question when you’re networking, or in most conversations?
And what is your answer?
Take a pause here, because you can answer that question differently, in such a way that you make people take notice. This is about the power of storytelling and leaving a legacy that lingers in people’s minds.
This is what we explored in the most recent of our Marketing Challenge workshops, held at The St James’s Club, Manchester.
Contains No Nuts
Marketers will reiterate that when you promote a product or service you highlight the benefits, not the features. The features are not always what your prospects and customers need to know. What they need to know is how what you offer them will make a difference to their lives.
That is why marketing consumer goods is all about marketing lifestyles, aspirations and emotions.
Effective storytelling follows a similar principle. You miss out the nuts and bolts and focus on the stuff that resonates emotionally.
There are two key elements here: pain and legacy.
Pain and Legacy
Start with the pain:
- What problems do your customers and prospects have?
- What issues keep them awake at night?
- What could their long-term consequences be without your involvement?
Are they failing to maintain their profit margins, or suffering a high staff turnover? Are their energy bills too high, or their distribution channels too restricted?
Knowing and understanding these pains can be an initial attention-getter.
Then it’s about following it up with the legacy part:
- What changes have you enabled your customers, similar to the prospect you are addressing, to make?
- What are the long-term benefits of your involvement?
Boil this down to something concise and it is far more effective than simply telling people what you do.
While much marketing should be common sense, like all deceptively simple things, it can be hard to tell your stories well. It’s as much about developing a mindset as following guidelines or rules. This is what the first part of our recent Marketing Challenge event looked at.
Our Marketing Challenge events are informal and friendly, but focused. They are events with a purpose, enabling guests to attract, connect and educate their target audiences
Guest were given a storytelling structure, then we lead them through a dynamic, involving workshop where they developed their legacy stories.
Our aim is to ensure that guests leave with something that not only can they think about, but which they can use to improve their own marketing and engagement with customers and prospects.
That’s our legacy. What will be yours?
Like all social media, Twitter has to be used strategically to be most effective. It is fast and it’s concise. If you want your message to be seen, and shared, then tweeting it once is not enough. The life of a tweet is short, under 20 minutes. The other thing to take into consideration is how Twitter works.
The Twitter Timeline Feature
In the interests of improving user quality, Twitter allows users to order the tweets they follow in order of those they are most likely to care about, as opposed to simply the most recent ones. These top tweets appear in reverse chronological order, followed by the remainder displayed as usual.
More than ever, using Twitter successfully as a strategic marketing tool requires building a loyal audience. Twitter believes that users of the new feature tend to retweet, and to tweet more. This is why shareability of content is vital. But it is also crucial to get your audience’s attention, which is where repeat tweeting comes in.
Repetition and Content
If you’re reliant on Twitter’s standard chronology to get your tweets noticed you may want to think again. Whereas repeat tweets help address the issue of capturing your audience, you now have to take into account whether or not they will opt for the new algorithm preference.
Tweets may end up ranking higher depending on the level that their audience responds to them and interacts with them. Audience engagement is hugely important as interactions can also substantially extend a tweet’s lifespan.
Despite the limitations of the form, tweets are, like other content, dependent on engagement through the way they appeal to and intrigue an audience.
To use Twitter as a successful marketing tool, combine:
- The right kind of content that will engage with your audience
- The frequency of your tweeting
- Your targeted repetition