What’s your story? [Exotel’s marketing 101]

September 6, 2019

Let’s talk about storytelling in marketing. I’m sure every single one of you has read some very powerful articles about how the importance of telling your brand’s story and creating a connection with the audience. Every marketing guide also tells you to create a story so powerful that it urges your customers to become your ambassadors.

Getting your story right is the most essential part of marketing.

But what is this all-powerful story? And how can you get to that story?

Your marketing story is the one that puts your customer at the center of the problem you’re trying to solve. In this story, your brand is a supporting character. An important one at that. But only a supporting character. The protagonist is still your customer. And the problem they are trying to solve is the villain. It’s all about slaying the villain to create the “happily ever after.”

5 things you need to create a strong marketing story

A strong protagonist – who is the customer you’re trying to solve the problem for?
A villain – what is the problem that your customer is currently facing?
Empathy – do you know what your customer is going through because of the problem they are facing?
Resolution – how can you solve the customer’s problem?
A promising future – why does solving this problem make your customer’s life better?

Here’s the bonus point

A backstory – don’t dwell on this but use it to create a connection with the customer.

Let me explain this with Exotel’s example when we started out, Shivku created Exotel as a tool to help solve problems of missing customer calls for his first startup, Roopit. It was a C2C marketplace that was medium agnostic. A lot of the business happened over calls and SMS. He wanted an easy way to solve this without investing a lot on infrastructure. And that’s how he built this tool. So, our first marketing story was this:

Never miss a business call. Every customer call counts. We understand that it’s hard to get back the business because of missing calls. Use Exotel to ensure that you exactly what happens over your business phone system without investing in expensive hardware.

Over the years, this has evolved. But our first marketing story helped us understand what our customers wanted out of Exotel and where we are today is a reflection of our first business proposition.

Your marketing story helps you identify if you have the right Product-Market fit. It helps you figure if you have the right understanding of the pain point you’re trying to solve. A good marketing story helps you create a one-line brief or an elevator pitch for your product or service. (Click to Tweet)

Some ground rules for creating the right marketing story:

  • Don’t use jargon
  • Don’t feel the need to over-explain
  • Don’t oversell
  • Do use real statements and examples from customers
  • Do talk to customers before you identify the story that resonates with your business
  • Don’t hesitate to change it as your business evolves
  • Do re-enforce your marketing story at every possible opportunity and at every touchpoint

Your marketing story is not set in stone. It will change and evolve over time. In fact, a good marketing story will evolve over time. (Click to Tweet)

Gayatri Krishnamoorthy
Written By
Gayatri's fascination for all things digital led her to work at Google after a degree in physics. Now, many years later, she has dabbled in marketing, business development, account management, research, insights mining, social media management and whatnot! Right now, she's heading Inbound Marketing at Exotel and runs home at 5 to be with her son. She's also a wannabe food blogger and photographer.

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