Grow Your Kitchen Series: 5 Tips To Creating Your Brand Story
The food business market is naturally competitive. A post-covid boom of new openings has made for a crowded marketplace from sit-down fine dining to bespoke catering services. Humans are emotional creatures who spend based on feelings. Developing your brand story is a way to create connections by eliciting engagement with your customer base.
In addition, not everything will fit on your menu or label (although you can certainly link a QR code to a page on your website!). Your brand story is where consumers go to decide if they can trust you and whether you share the same intentions.
The power now squarely lies with the customer and their journey on a path to purchase. The average consumer is more speculative than ever about where they will spend their dollar. Buying is socially driven and trust-based, with an emphasis on value. Likewise, part of conveying the latter is by drawing people into your food business story. Value and transparency will convert to loyal customers invested in your growth and success.
Your brand story is not your mission statement; it is a place to describe your unique brand journey and value system. Here, customers will determine whether you have shared values and brand loyalty will be made. In addition, it is a place where your story may resonate with the potential customer drawing them into your journey.
Your brand story also serves as an internal north start for your team. It provides an anchor to why you exist, giving purpose and motivation to drive your team forward.
In this article, we’ll describe how to build your purpose statement and how using this statement will inform your brand storytelling. We will also walk you through four ways to tell your brand story effectively.
Defining The Purpose of Your Food Business
Defining your brand’s purpose is an essential starting point for creating your brand story. While everyone’s story will be different, and the way you tell your story can take on different forms, your unique brand story should be anchored in your company’s purpose. Check out Grow Your Kitchen Series: Defining Your Purpose for more on how to build a concise purpose statement that will be the anchor to your brand story. Check out our article on defining your brand’s purpose here.
Connecting To Your Audience With Authenticity
Successful marketing of your brand story should avoid pandering and stay authentic. Real and raw stories that don’t flinch away from talking about your hard path to create your dream will resonate with your audience. In addition, your purpose should inspire your audience to become part of a community and culture that you are making through your company’s mission.
Failure can be a deeply effective part of brand storytelling. It shows that you swing big and are willing to take risks in something you believe in. Failure shows integrity because you stood by your product even when things left. The losses also show that you’ve taken learning opportunities to optimize your business and will take chances in the future to evolve with new knowledge.
Creating Brand Advocates
A compelling and inspiring brand story will create people who want to retell your story to others. This kind of organic marketing touchpoint is priceless. Likewise, an ecosystem of social, loyal followers is worth its weight in marketing gold.
Customers with no stake in your company who are invested in your journey enough to testify to its authenticity by word of mouth or social media can drive high-quality referrals and the social phenomena where a “crowd attracts a crowd.” Peer testimonials are one of the most substantial ways customers create value in your business.
How To Tell Your Brand Story For Your Food Business
The hallmarks of a compelling brand story are humility, authenticity, and inspirational reader resonance. In addition, your brand story should relate to the journey that took you from idea to launch. Below we dissect The Hero’s Journey, one of the best ways that you can articulate your brand story while working your purpose and values into the narrative.
The Hero’s Journey
The Hero’s Journey is an age-old format for creating a dynamic story. It is one way to craft your brand story. Our hero sets off on a journey replete with pitfalls and challenges and, through a series of accomplishments, ends up in (food business) glory, celebrated by consumers everywhere.
However, in the case of a food brand story, the hero is usually your customer who has been transformed for the better after meeting your product. As the brand, you are the trusty sidekick guiding the hero to transformation.
1. Create your character.
Determine who your audience is and paint a picture that will resonate with that audience. Some people find it helpful to define their hobbies, habits, likes and dislikes to form a better picture of who you are telling your brand story to.
2. Identify the problem.
What is the hero struggling with? What roadblock is prohibiting them from transformation? In the food world, this could be anything from a lack of healthy food for children or the absence of authentic cuisine in your neighborhood.
3. Describe a solution.
Explain how you came along as the hero’s sidekick to solve this problem. Describe your food brand’s solution product or service.
4. Celebrate the success.
Describe how your solution has led to a successful result. Relate a customer’s review or anecdote—site awards and achievements.
5. Summarize the transformation.
Recap the journey and the pain points that have been solved. You can do this in one to two concise sentences in the same way the last chapter of a book reminds you of where you have been and where you are going.
6. Take your client into the future.
Express gratitude to your reader for coming on your journey and invite them to see what awaits. Describe your future goals and identify pain points that you are in the process of relieving. An evolving company is an exciting one to follow. Above all, take your client towards your future vision within your brand story.
Never underestimate the power of a good brand story. Stories of all kinds grab our attention and can transport us into the founder’s world. We form connections between the stories and ourselves as we identify common values, struggles, and successes. Finally, your unique brand story creates a powerful opportunity to build deeper relations with your audience and invite them to be part of your mission and growth.
Read More: GROW YOUR KITCHEN SERIES: THE SAPI COURSE TO JUMPSTART YOUR FOOD BUSINESS