Marketing teams often do a great job of telling moving stories here, writing compelling copy there. When you put it all together with storytelling copywriting, magic happens.
Great content strategy is more than keyword targeting and multi-channel publishing.
Don’t get me wrong. You can have a pretty good strategy built on those factors alone.
But the best content plans are the ones that are driven by compelling stories.
Stories that create a sense of connection and inspire action.
Storytelling Copywriting: Stories that Persuade
Sure, stories can inform.
“Hey, I got gas today, and the price was down a bit from yesterday.”
That’s an informative story. It has a character (me), a problem (needed gas), an action (got gas), and a resolution (it was cheap).
But with copywriting – which is basically sales in text form – stories can also compel action.
“I went to the corner gas station today, and the price was down about a quarter per gallon! You should head down there before it goes up again.”
Now the audience is invited to participate in the resolution, to be the hero of their own story.
That’s telling a story to drive action: storytelling + copywriting.
Storytelling Copywriting in Action
Check out these examples. They might not fit your business or organization category exactly, but I hope they provide some inspiration!
Great stories abound in the not-for-profit world. Storytelling comes pretty easily. But what’s sometimes missing is strong copywriting to compel action.
Example: Adoption Services
I got my start with freelance content writing by interviewing people who had adopted and writing their stories.
Frankly, I wasn’t great at first.
Not the storytelling part. Most writers can nail that.
What took time was learning how to tie in persuasive copy.
As a reader considering adoption, I would want to hear:
- About an adoptive family that I can relate to (a desire to help, possibly infertility, etc.)
- How the nonprofit was able to help them, and
- What I should do next.
In my experience, too many nonprofits leave the call to action implied. But in effective storytelling copywriting, it needs to be explicit.
“You can make a difference, too.”
“Talk to an adoption specialist.”
“Fill out this contact form now.”
Remember who the real hero is: your audience. Empower them to take action.
If you’ve ever moved, you know it’s an emotional experience. There’s always a story for good estate agents to tell on behalf of their clients.
Example: Estate Sales
I’ve worked with an agent who specializes in helping families sell homes following the death of the owner.
There’s a real temptation to view the agent as the hero.
He’s making sure executors, who often have an overwhelming set of duties, get top dollar.
But the true protagonist is the executor reading the story.
It’s powerful to call them out, to tell them directly, “The power to settle your loved one’s estate is in your hands. Call now for a consultation.”
That’s effective storytelling copywriting.
Stories of healing are always powerful for those who can relate to the pain.
And storytellers who have had a life-changing experience are often eager to do your work for you – they tend to make their own call to action!
Example: Medical Devices
For a couple of years, I wrote several stories for a company that sells a hands-free walker.
What’s the big deal about a walker?
I kind of understood when it was explained to me. It’s ideal for people who are unsteady on their feet and don’t want to lose their independence.
But it really clicked when I heard story after story from customers.
They literally used the word “life-changing” to describe this device!
I asked them all what they wanted others considering a purchase to know, and it took not a bit of cajoling to get the answers:
“You can have your life back.”
“A better future is within reach.”
“Try it. You’ll love it.”
Sometimes, storytelling and copywriting are one and the same.
And that’s pure gold.
Your Turn to Tell a Great Storytelling Copywriting Story
This works across so many categories, it’s practically universal.
You can be successful at this no matter your business or organization:
- Make your audience (prospective customers, clients, donors, etc.) the true hero.
- Cast yourself as the supporter, the partner, the helping hand.
- Show how the hero can solve their problem (with a little help from you).
- Use your story to make a clear and compelling call to action.
Together, the stories you tell create a larger brand story.
By telling your audience about those you serve, you’re sneakily telling them about who you are.
And that’s someone worth doing business with!
My partners and I have helped lots of small businesses, nonprofits, and schools raise their visibility through effective storytelling copywriting. Let’s talk about how we can help you!