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BLOGS · Nordic Morning

Blandness – a luxury brands can’t afford

08.09.16

By: Hanna Isohanni-Nikula, Strategist, Sitrus

The Nordic Morning stage at Marketing Week will be packed with insights on customer experience and marketing communications for two days, 20–21 September. One of the hottest, yet most abstract, issues we will address is storification or story design – the way to use classical drama tools and storytelling in brand building and communication. Hanna Isohanni-Nikula, Strategist at Sitrus, shares her views on the subject.

”The big deal about storytelling is that there are universal rules and tools that have worked their magic for hundreds, even thousands of years – and they still do”, explains Hanna.

”If a brand can’t evoke any feelings and engage with its desired audience on an emotional level, it becomes a commodity, and even the tactical advertising won’t work as well as it could. A truthful yet engaging brand story is a way to avoid facing indifference.”

So how do you design a brand story?

”At first you have to know your identity as a company and get a buy-in for that. What does your brand stand for, and what or who is its arch enemy. Basically, it’s the same thing that Simon Sinek points out even in his book title: ’Start with why’.”

”After that you can start building the brand’s personality. What kind of a protagonist or hero is she? What are her weaknesses? What kind of characters – customers – is she helping on their way? What obstacles are they facing? And what is the ultimate goal of this brand hero? In my presentation I’ll also go through the basic dramatic arch which is a very useful tool for anyone working with marcom these days.”

Hanna Isohanni-Nikula works as a strategist at Sitrus. She’s worked with content, marketing and communication since 2003, first with TV content and communications for several years, and later with B2B corporation Fonecta during its transformation from a phone book publisher into a digital marketing company.

Hanna Isohanni-Nikula: Stop being bland / Älä ole yhdentekevä (presentation in Finnish) on Nordic Morning stage on Wednesday 20 September at 11:00 and Thursday 21 September at 13:00. Check out the whole programme here (only in Finnish).