Following on from our review of Donald Miller’s Building a StoryBrand, a new report shows that this story-based approach to messaging is taking hold among UK brands.

The report, a collaboration between marketing publisher The Drum and Amazon Ads, asked 250 UK marketers about their plans for the forthcoming year. In the introduction, Kate McCagg, Head of Brand Innovation Lab at Amazon Ads, shares her thoughts on this trend as well as some potential challenges:

…when audiences feel like they are part of the story, they relate to it in a way that transcends product features or launches. This can be a critical moment for brands to lean into a compelling narrative and appeal to customers on a deeper level – beyond just the functional product/service benefits.

But with shorter attention spans and lots of noise to contend with, the rules are changing. Technology is making it progressively easier for audiences to ignore irrelevant advertising, and if a brand isn’t telling a story that resonates with them, they can easily avoid hearing it. With a smaller window of engagement, a story that feels familiar in audiences’ minds can be the differentiator.

The Holy Grail of brand storytelling is when people want to listen to your story – so that, just as they might reread and recommend their favorite book to others, they will keep coming back to your brand and even share their experience with friends.

The report highlights how brands and marketers can most effectively use storytelling through four essential elements: customers, creative, channels and content-to-commerce. The whole report is worth reading.

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