If you follow the Big Marketing Insider, you know that back in January we dubbed 2015 The Year of Digital Media and Your Company Story. At Little Jack, we think companies that aren’t generating a compelling story are doing themselves a disservice in the online environment, and we’re on a quest to change that.
That’s why we were happy to see KissMetrics call 2015 “The Year of the Story Brand” last week, introducing their many followers to the same important concept. The article has 5 different thought leaders chiming in on the importance of the company story. Here are the main takeaways:
There Is a Brand Bias in Search Rankings
The continuous improvements to search engines are eliminating a lot of the loopholes companies used to use to artificially improve their search rankings. Cohesive websites and strong brands that can demonstrate visitor interest are now being favored over ones with keyword-heavy content. Going forward, content quality will be the single biggest determining factor in search rankings.
Brands are Human
Brand success often rides on the perception of authenticity, or humanness. Small businesses shouldn’t try to outdo their large competitors on the technological front (that’s nearly impossible anyway), but by telling a new kind of story. The characteristics can make a brand feel human—“A willingness to express emotion, a clear sense of purpose, and perhaps above all else, meaningful communication”.
Focus on Reach and Frequency
Quality content is the first step, but brand strength can be measured in terms of reach and frequency. Ensuring you’re creating enough new content to regularly generate interest, and then getting that content in front of as many eyes as possible through cross-platform promotion will help you increase brand awareness and increase your audience base.
Build Your Story Using the Ideas of Conflict, Authenticity, and Audience
Introducing conflict into your company story (such as a challenge you had to overcome) is a great way to increase engagement, because the human mind is built to recognize and pay attention conflict. Once you’ve built a brand, stay authentic to it instead of changing your strategy to whatever seems to be in fashion this month. Finally, the true way to build an audience is to have a story that encourages sharing—this lets your audience do the promotion work for you.
Get Back to Basics: Making a Connection
The amount of content each user consumes is on the rise, but content platforms are becoming increasingly fragmented. Every day, there is more content being created, but a smaller and smaller portion offers true value to the customer. Don’t focus too much on trying to “trick” users into visiting your site via search engine manipulation—instead, grow your visitor base organically, by making a connection with them and keeping them coming back for more.
Use these insight as you think about your own company’s story. We’ll be posting much more on this subject throughout the year, to help you create a story that truly makes a difference for your company’s bottom line.