• Log In To Your Member Portal

Telling a compelling brand story

storybrand framework

When we use the wrong words to convey our messages, people tend to disengage and lose focus. It’s a sad but inevitable part of life. 

Not only that, but when they do finally engage and get into our messages, they may have a hard time elaborating on it with friends, family, and colleagues. It’s because we have a hard time grasping stories we can’t follow. 

That’s why it’s so important to tell your brand story effectively. If you don’t, people are likely to lose focus and the point.

 Learning to use the Storybrand framework to tell our brand stories makes them more memorable, and it encourages the word to spread naturally.

What is the Storybrand Framework?

The Storybrand framework is a marketing tool developed by the author, public speaker, and CEO Donald Miller to convey a brand’s message in a way that is easily absorbed and sticky enough that customers and clients fully understand the brand’s value proposition. 

In his book, Building a Storybrand: Clarify your Message so Customers will Listen, Donald Miller lays out a marketing strategy based on the Hero’s Journey. The Hero’s Journey is a framework for storytelling that’s been around as long as people have been telling stories. 

It’s compelling. In the case of the storybrand framework, it also casts the client as the hero and the brand as the guide. Customers can see how your brand fits into their story. 

What is the Hero’s Journey?

For anyone who’s ever taken a creative writing class, you are probably very familiar with the Hero’s Journey. It’s one of the first things you learned about when covering story structure. 

Writing teachers spend so much time covering it because it’s been an effective storytelling device in numerous cultures for centuries. Even if you’ve never studied it, you’ve undoubtedly encountered the Hero’s Journey in some of your favorite films and stories.

Basically, the hero’s journey tells the story of a protagonist who wants something, faces difficulty, finds a guide with a plan, is called to action, and is ultimately diverted from failure and finds the success they seek. Sound familiar? 

Adopting the Hero’s journey to your marketing strategy can be just as effective as it is to traditional storytelling. The storybrand framework does just that. The key is to identify how you can effectively guide your clients, customers, or patients.

How do you effectively tell a brand story?

In order to tell your brand story effectively, you need to remember that it’s a story, and all the rules that successful story structures follow are incredibly helpful in the case of conveying your brand story.

When telling your brand story, you aren’t simply telling people about your brand. If your brand story is effective, it elicits an emotional response from potential customers. 

By placing your brand into their personal story and showing them how it can help them achieve their goals, they become emotionally involved because it represents a positive force within their own stories. 

We go about weaving our brands into our hero’s journeys by developing a Storybrand Brandscript.

What is a Brandscript?

Now that you understand the basics of the Hero’s Journey, let’s look at how to adapt that to your individual case and build your story brand

There are seven steps in the Storybrand framework, and they form what is known as the Storybrand Brandscript. The specific steps of the Storybrand Brandscript are as follows:

The Character

Your customer is the protagonist and hero of the story. What do they want to achieve? The hero’s mission must be clear, and it’s important that you understand it well. In the case of a dental patient, maybe they want a perfectly white set of chompers. Perhaps they just want the ability to eat comfortably again. Maybe all this boils down to their simply wanting a healthy mouth. When you identify what your hero really wants, you can provide valuable guidance toward that goal.

The Problem

Try as they may, the protagonist inevitably encounters challenges that prevent them from achieving their goal. People like smokers, coffee drinkers, and people with hereditary traits that affect their teeth can’t always just brush their problems away. They need outside help to make meaningful strides toward their goals.

The Guide

Since your protagonist has realized they can’t achieve their goal on their own, they seek out support from a guide. In the case mentioned above, the guide is the dentist who helps the hero, the patient, find their way. This is where your company fits into the Storybrand framework. You’ve been there before and know the advantages and pitfalls associated with each choice your hero can make. 

The personal nature of the guide’s story goes a long way toward instilling trust in the protagonist, making them feel more comfortable with any decisions they ultimately decide to make. 

The Plan

Let’s face it. What the hero is really after when seeking a guide is a plan. Not someone to tell them exactly what to do, necessarily, but someone with the wisdom to help them develop a plan that helps them avoid the bumps in the road that may cause their plan to derail. 

Someone to help identify the things they may be missing and let them know what they are doing right.

The Call to Action…

Once the hero has consulted with their guide and generated a plan, it’s time for them to take action. They’ll never achieve their goal without doing so. 

This one is solely on the part of the protagonist. The guide can’t force the hero to take action but can offer motivation and support. Believe it or not, a simple call to action is where many people miss the boat. Taking the dental patient example: the dentist needs the patient to schedule an appointment to lead them to success. A simple “Schedule an Appointment” button on the brand’s website can be enough to push the hero to action. This is where you want your brand front and center.

…That Helps Them Avoid Failure…

The plan that our hero devises, with the help of their guide (you), will help them avoid failure in their mission. The hero understands the benefit of the plan and all the ways the guide was invaluable in assisting them to avoid the pitfalls associated with making the wrong decision. This is where the true value of the guide shines through.

…And Leads to a Successful Outcome

When our hero achieves their goal, it makes the whole process worthwhile. They are excited, and everyone in their circle is excited for them. This is the foundation of word-of-mouth marketing. The hero knows the value of the guide firsthand, and their circle spreads the story far and wide.

From confusion to clarity

By identifying what your customers are ultimately after, you are able to effectively communicate the value you offer as a guide. If they still can’t see the value, you need to reexamine what they are really after. When people can clearly see how the guide is helping them achieve their goals, something just clicks. 

That’s why the Donald Miller Storybrand framework is so effective. It helps brands create a value proposition based on the needs of the customer. When those needs are fully understood, your brand becomes an important part of their journeys.

What is Storybrand Marketing?

So, how do you work the storybrand framework into your marketing strategy? Put simply, storybrand marketing is recognizing your brand’s role in your customer’s story and acting on it. Sounds simple, doesn’t it? But, to market your brand in a way your customer sees as invaluable, you need to have a firm grasp on what it is that they really want in the first place. Developing your company’s mission around your customers’ goals provides them clarity on how you can help them achieve those goals.

Building a Storybrand Brandscript

You can look through all the Storybrand Brandscript examples in the world, but the right one for your brand is personal, so use the examples as guides, but make your Brandscript a product of your customers’ needs and aspirations.

A Storybrand certified guide can help you direct your Storybrand marketing strategy in a way that makes the most of the system. Luckily for you, we’ve got the chops to help you develop a solid marketing strategy based upon the Storybrand framework.