TELL YOUR BRAND STORY WITH SWAG
Every brand has a story to tell. Your product or service, logo colors, mission statement (or lack thereof), social media presence, and even the way you answer the phone tells the world who you are. It’s a story that is constantly evolving and each interaction with your crowd is a turn of the page. Good marketing is about wrangling your brand story and telling it in a way that turns strangers into loyal fans.
Why should you knuckle down on your brand story? Isn’t it merely another marketing buzzword? Do people really care about your story?
When you share your story, you share your values. Values lead to connection. And connecting with your crowd is like finding a $100 bill in your coat pocket. Everything just got better.
To tell your story you must first know your story. It’s a thoughtful process that involves distilling your brand down to a basic arc that all marketing efforts revolve around. No problem, right?
Let’s keep things simple. Below is our CliffsNotes advice for developing your brand story.
Step # 1
Define your crowd. What do they want? What’s missing from their life? (They might not even know. This is where your brand can shine.) Maybe it’s reliable cloud storage that saves their butt during a crucial client meeting. Or maybe it’s a new flavor of frozen yogurt that’s not all “been there, done that.”
Step # 2
Define what’s holding your crowd back. What’s preventing their progress? What are their doubts? When and why have they been let down in the past?
Step # 3
Define your gift. How can you help? What do you offer that’s different? If you haven’t listened to Simon Sinek’s TED talk about the power of “Why”, give it a listen here. It;s a crucial element of your brand story.
Step # 4
Define how your crowd’s trust is earned. What is the process? Is it difficult or easy?
Step # 5
Define what victory looks like. What does your crowd now know (that they didn’t know before)? What does their future look like and how does your brand play a part in it?
You may be wondering, “How can a pen or a water bottle possibly tell my brand story?” Hold onto your logoed hat while we explain.
The world of promotional products is more than slapping your logo on the side of something and hoping it doesn’t end up on the curb with Thursday’s trash. Swag should amplify your brand’s passion and elicit a “heck, yeah!” emotional response from the receiver.
Think about your favorite t-shirt. Why do you reach for it over and over again? Why are some of your t-shirts relegated to thrift store bins while others maintain holy grail status in your closet?
Because it means something to you.
Because it’s anything but boring. Instead of basic white, it’s charcoal grey and made from the softest fabric. There is no scratchy tag at the back of the neck to flip up and distract you throughout the day. You love the graphics on the front. When you wear the t-shirt out and about, people immediately grasp the kind of person you are (and aren’t).
Yep… it’s awesome.
Let’s break down what went into creating your favorite t-shirt.
While defining their story, a brand realized their crowd (you) loves t-shirts. After a long day at work, there’s nothing quite like changing into your favorite shirt and settling into a full Netflix queue and (hopefully) a huge plate of cheese. A yawn-worthy 2” logo on the front left chest wasn’t going to cut it. They knew they needed something amazing, so they tasked their graphics department with creating an unforgettable design.
This enlightened brand then sorted through 27 charcoal grey t-shirt samples before selecting the softest one. They knew comfort was important to their crowd. Delight is one of their brand values, after all. Shouldn’t every t-shirt they give out reflect this? Ditto for the tag in the back. “Does this make people feel good?” they asked themselves and opted for a t-shirt with the sizing info screen printed on the inside back neck.
The end result? A charcoal grey t-shirt (their primary brand color) with a kickass graphic on the front that perfectly represents the happy vibes of the brand. Every time you wear their t-shirt, you help tell their story.
At the end of the day, your brand is not about you. It’s about the people you serve. Whether you give them whiter teeth or sell them the best dang hamburger in all the land, your brand exists to make their lives better. In return, you earn loyalty.
We’ve put together a “swag story” checklist for your next event or giveaway. How does your promotional product stack up?
- Does it create an experience (such as interesting packaging or a surprising graphic?)
- Does it exceed crowd expectations?
- Does it affirm quality over quantity?
- Will it make it’s way onto desktops and nightstands or into closets and hearts?
- How does it represent your brand story?
Turn your crowd into brand storytellers
The true test of a good promotional product is if your crowd reaches for it. What story do they want to be a part of? A passing thought or a meaningful connection?
Stories create a sense of belonging and understanding. They inspire people and propel them into action. Every time your crowd wears your t-shirt or carries your bag, they are saying to the world, “This brand is worthy of my love.”
Our story is all about helping you stand out in a crowded world. How can we lend a hand to your next project? Let’s chat!