When Brand Storytelling Becomes Word Salad

Today’s marketers and communications professionals have been told countless times that they need to create a personally-connected narrative that bridges the company with its buyers. Coined “brand storytelling” in the early 2010s, the phrase and resulting approach has taken on a life of its own as marketers and consulting firms make word salad of overall corporate messaging, marketing content and even press releases, in an attempt to differentiate an organization from the pack. 

The challenge with this approach is that the practicality of what the given organization does is often lost in self-serving jargon that no one understands. Case in point: After driving by an enormous construction site, I asked my 14-year-old to Google the name of the company.  She began reading some of the site’s descriptors like “Making the complex seamless” and “transforming potential into power.” Huh?

While it’s extremely important to ensure that messaging connects with the reader, what often is lost is the clarity and practical definition of what a company does. The best way to connect with key audiences is through your customers – let their voices tell the story.

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