In previous blogs about storytelling as part of a social commerce strategy, we’ve outlined the various types of effective stories campaigns. Today we’ll look at some specific examples of each type of story campaign – brand association, brand, and product – by highlighting manufacturers’ success with stories.
New Balance associated its brand with inspiring tales from runners’ experiences. A Runner’s Tale: Stories from the Road gives runners the chance to tell about their best runs, centering on the New Balance-sponsored Rock ‘n Roll Marathon series that runs throughout 2009. Their invitation to share reads, “Every pair of shoes tells a story. Each one unique and beautiful – with its own set of struggles, pitfalls and ultimate triumphs. That’s what we love about them. We’re dying to hear yours.”
People don’t generally write about their shoes – not all marathoners at these events wear New Balance – but passionate runners want to share their stories and New Balance capitalizes on this, reaching out to runners using other brands to expose them to the New Balance brand. They also allow submission via a link on their Facebook page.
Under Armour is positioned as an innovative sports gear company that helps customers – especially serious athletes – perform at optimum levels by providing performance and comfort not found in other garments. To get firsthand input on their brand, they encouraged users to share their experiences, using this prompt: “Under Armour is on a mission to make all athletes better. Did we make you better?”
Each story gives insights into customers’ interactions, experiences, and long-time reliance on the brand, giving Under Armour great insights into why their customers choose them. The relevant, sports- and performance-focused content drives increased organic search results.
These manufacturers draw new varieties of searchers their sites, using highly relevant, specific content to differentiate them from other brands. At the same time, customer-contributed stories create fresh, highly relevant content to drive natural search, help build brand loyalty, build a sense of community, and help inform brands about their key consumers.