Take a look at any store, and the layout changes for the holidays and the season to match what is on our minds. Albeit, Christmas seems to be creeping ever earlier, now even before Halloween!
Marketers capitalize on what is relevant. We don’t find bikinis appealing to buy in December or heavy wool mittens worthwhile in sweltering July heat. The story changes every season.
When it comes to your own story that is heard/read by customers and prospects, your message has to be consistent, persistent and relevant. The timing of what you are offering has to catch people where they are at in their mindsets. Gary Vaynerchuk said it aptly in his bestseller, Jab, Jab, Jab Right Hook:
No matter who you are or what kind of company or organization you work for, your number-one job is to tell your story to the consumer wherever they are, and preferably at the moment they are deciding to make a purchase. ~ Gary Vaynerchuk
You see, we tell ourselves a story when we buy something. That story starts long before we decide on making a purchase. It is going on in our heads:
On buying a gym membership … “I want to feel fit and get in shape so I can look great in a smaller dress size.”
Dining at a high end steakhouse … “I have worked hard all week and deserve a nice dinner out with class.”
Getting that new car … “I am all about fun and want to live freely.”
There are innumerable amounts of stories going on in our heads. The ones we choose to tell ourselves catalyze our decision to buy.
If you can match up to that story with the right timing and frequency, then you nurture an event that happens over time inside people. This is why your content has to frame that story and create engagement wherever people are at. This means ensuring you don’t skip on timing. You publish your message so people can expect it.
It also means people can read what you send or share on their mobile device or tablet. Make it hard and they can simply ignore you.
Having the right message at the right time in the buying cycle means staying tuned in and analyzing what readers are doing.
This all takes a great amount of attention and work, but the attention economy is not very forgiving. Consumers have control of what they read or engage with. Thus, storytelling is not just about the right story. It’s about all the mechanics and pieces for making the story easy and desirable to hear, read and watch.
Yes, you have to work hard and be tuned in. That’s just the reality of a changing world. But the storytelling will always be critical.