Friday, May 11, 2012

Does your brand have a story?

All great brands do.

They may have had an interesting birth: Apple was created by two entrepreneurs tinkering in a garage in California. Facebook was founded student at Harvard who may or may not have stolen the idea from two classmates and the desire to get back at an ex-girlfriend. The idea for Federal Express only received a C from a Yale business professor when Fred Smith submitted it in a paper.

They may have overcome monumental challenges: Harley-Davidson has thrived since its near-death experience in the '80s. Tylenol's quick response saved it from product tampering. Ford made incredibly tough choices a decade ago and is now stronger than ever.

They may be populated with personalities and characters, champions and enemies.

Strong brands are more than just a collection of products, logos and ads. They are living, breathing organisms that evolve and grow, or whither and die. One way to prevent the latter from happening is to know your story and tell it well.

Don't just write a bio for your brand. Do more than list the achievements and milestones. Write the story. Novelize it. Illustrate it. Bring your brand to life as the hero of an epic tale.

People love stories. Tell yours well and you'll have more than customers. You'll have fans.

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