Brand Storytelling with Direct Mail
Everyone loves a good story that captivates and evokes emotions in a way that statistical analysis doesn’t capture. One Hopi American Indian proverb states, “Those who tell the stories rule the world.” With a power of that magnitude, businesses that embrace the art of brand storytelling are at an advantage. But how do organizations get their brand story in front of audiences? One compelling way is with direct mail marketing. See our brand storytelling examples and how you can bring your brand to (real) life!
What is Brand Storytelling?
Brand storytelling involves the narrative you develop around your business, including how you came to be (your origin story), your mission, and why you continue pursuing your passion. Customers want to see your humanity and understand what drives you. Think about the why of a business. Why did you start your business, and why should it matter? Most companies begin as a passion or a cause and take flight from there.
Take Blueland as an example. Sarah Paiji realized the economic impact of single-use plastics and the health effects of microplastics in food and water. She launched her eco-friendly company to help further her passion and help make it easy for others to join the cause. Now, Blueland products help reduce waste while helping to limit the detrimental impact of microplastics on our health: a back story, a mission, and a passion.
Your brand story is essential because it engages your audience emotionally, forming a connection between the company and the consumer. A strong relationship creates loyal customers who are less likely to shop elsewhere. People no longer want hype. They want genuine, valuable relationships with companies; a brand story helps you create that.
How to Tell a Brand Story with Direct Mail Marketing
Direct mail marketing provides a unique opportunity for companies to combine their journey with the physical experience of tactile marketing. Take your story and mesh it with items people can touch and feel, and you’ll be on the path to forming an emotional connection.
Here are the general steps for telling an authentic brand story.
- Map out your origin story. (Your how.)
- Define what problem you’re solving. (This is the hook to grab attention.)
- Determine your brand voice. (Your personality.)
- Define your values. (Your why.)
- Write your brand story. (Put your voice, passion, goals, and plans into a narrative.)
Brand Story Examples
Let your personality shine in all of your messaging. The best brand stories embody a true passion while showcasing an authentic voice and a cause. Take the following brand stories as an example.
Warby Parker describes themselves as a scrappy little upstart that began as a solution to a problem. This provider uses their origin story to position their brand as a rebellious entity fighting for space in a challenging market segment. The story goes like this. One of the founders lost his glasses during a backpacking trip as a student. Strapped for cash, he spent an entire semester unable to replace his glasses and wanted an affordable alternative. Thus, a brand was born. They also partner with nonprofits to help supply glasses to those in need. Values, backstory, and a healthy dose of do-good make this brand story a winner.
This unique dating app defines itself as “the dating app meant to be deleted.” The app came about as a solution to a broken heart, a story everyone can relate to on some level. With a focus on creating long-term connections, Hinge believes so strongly in their abilities that their primary marketing campaign encourages users to date and ditch (the app). Their focus on lasting relationships and genuine connections helps this brand story stand out as an excellent alternative to swiping. What better way of knowing a brand has your back than by being so effective it becomes obsolete?
Telling an Authentic Brand Story with Direct Mail
Direct mail allows you to overshadow digital fatigue by placing your brand in your customers (or prospects) hands. People want authentic experiences, and direct mail is exactly that. What’s more real than getting your brand inside the front door of your customer’s homes? Most of us are digitally overloaded, and direct mail can cut help cut through the noise.
Direct mail campaigns that reflect your brand personality and values are the most effective. Remember, you aren’t going for the lukewarm reception of “Dear Resident.” You want to make it personal and wow them with your offer. More like, “Hey, Pete, we’ve got something that’s going to knock your socks off.”
Direct Mail Marketing Ideas
Direct mail marketing still holds sway over your customers’ attention span. Here are some direct-mail marketing ideas that can move you from the friend zone to the brand winner zone.
Product samples: One way to generate interest in your brand is by providing product examples. Curating a box that offers a sneak peek into what makes you great at what you do is a strong opening and one we recommend.
Product launches: Adding a new product or service to your lineup? Get it physically in front of your audience to create awareness. Offer samples, give a sneak peek, or build anticipation by letting your fans know you’ve got something new in the pipeline.
Holiday or timely options: Holiday and seasonal items can be an excellent way to pique new interest. Coincide your direct mail campaign with relevant, timely events to get in front of customers or launch a seasonal product. Consider peppermint tea for the Christmas holiday or releasing a sports drink during the Olympics. Furthermore, customers love tying a relevant product to current events.
Partnership highlights: You know customer loyalty matters. Loyal customers are less expensive to retain and come with a more significant ROI. When your customers trust you, they want to support your partners. Use direct mail to highlight those community and commercial partnerships and help create awareness of how you are giving back.
Themed options: You could also choose to theme a relevant campaign for your target personas. If you sell sports and fitness accessories, try an outdoor hiking theme or an urban fitness routine to show how you fit into your prospects’ lives.
Showing thanks: Saying thanks matters. A personalized thank you card shows your genuine appreciation and helps to keep you top of mind.
Capability cards: Want to show your customers what you can do without sending over a sales deck? The direct-mail equivalent is capability cards. Quickly highlight your products or offerings on a small set of custom capability cards; your customers will have a go-to reference when they’re ready to purchase.
Philip Pullman said, “After nourishment, shelter, and companionship, stories are the thing we need most in the world.” The connection brands make with consumers through their brand story ultimately creates loyal customers and launches successful businesses.
Regardless of what you’re sending, the essential elements of a good brand are a strong voice and authenticity. The rest is just storytelling. Our team of experts is ready to help. Give us a shout!