The art of storytelling in PR

Approach 1: “This is an organic acne removal product. Buy it.”

Approach 2: “My friend Mini used this product since it is safe for the skin, being natural and organic. She loved it and has been raving about its efficacy in reducing the acne on her face. I think you should give it a try too.”

Of the above, which one would you find more convincing? Approach two, right? In this piece of writing, let’s understand why that is so.

Storytelling is an art that has been in existence since time immemorial in the form of folklores, parables and myths. Over the years, the fine art of storytelling has found its application not just in the field of entertainment but also in the corporate world. In fact, one avenue where storytelling has made a strong hold is Public Relations.

In a PR Campaign, delivering a simple, straightforward sales pitch will do you no good. Instead you need to have a proper insight into your client’s brand as well as entrepreneurial story and deliver just the right message to their customers in a credible and authentic manner. While different brands may tell a different type of story, the basic structure of all stories remains the same.

• Structure of The Story – Every story is like an adventurous journey. It has a beginning, a middle section and an end. Now it is up to you as a PR Consultant whether you convert that journey into a boring one or a fun and inspirational one. The beginning and middle are undoubtedly important, but with a ‘bang’ ending you will leave the readers, aka the brand’s customer base, happily surprised and make them connect with the brand better.

• Plot of the Story – Public Relations can turn out to be quite a complicated maze, if one works without an objective. This objective is what storytellers term as the ‘plot’. The plot answers one of the most important questions of your PR story, i.e. Why? When your plot is clear, your story is able to clearly explain to a customer why he should be loyal to this brand rather than the numerous other options available in the market.

• Hero of Your Story – Establishing the hero of your story is a basic but vital step one needs to take right at the beginning while planning a PR Campaign Strategy. Thereafter, the campaign should focus on developing stories that highlight the virtues of the hero. In most cases, your brand itself is the hero of your story. Moreover, when one tells a brand story, the objective is not to increase sales or the share value of that brand but popularizing the identity (or the so-called hero) of the brand.

• Hitches & Glitches in Your Story – A gripping story is one that leaves the readers wondering about the turn of events that took place. Same is the case with the story that you write for your public relations campaign purposes. Letting the target audience know of the brand’s journey and the challenges it has overcome in order to reach its current position helps in building a bond with them. This bond is strengthened over a period of time with consistent yet diverse stories related to the brand. In most cases this bond is strong enough to stand the test of time and make a customer believe in the brand even during crisis situations.

Storytelling is an art that only a few have mastered but with the above fundamentals done right, you can do wonders for your brand equity and promotion by making use of this art. So, Happy Storytelling to you!

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