Great Marketers Make Meaning.

Your brand has a purpose. Your brand has a story. 

But the story of your brand is less about you and more about your customer. In a recent interview with Michael Margolis, CEO of Get Storied, we chatted about the importance of “story” in branding – to which Michael said:

“Great brands understand how to give their customers ownership in the story.”

What’s the first brand that comes to mind when you think of “great branding”? For me I think about Moleskine, Apple, and Monday Night Brewery. I know, random. But each of these brands evokes an emotion and a story of my own.

I think about the way I feel when I open up a new Moleskine for the first time. It’s like having a blank canvas of possibility. There’s something almost ceremonial about it.

I think about the opportunities Apple has created for me to start and run a company. I’m thankful for simple, intuitive UX that makes it easy for me to tap into potential and opportunity.

I think about Monday Night, a microbrewery in Atlanta, and their slogan of “Weekends are Overrated”. I think about the story behind the brand and how it started as small post-workday garage gathering – and how that’s translated to a giant wall of neckties visitors have brought into the taproom, symbolic of the pursuit of passion and creative freedom. I can always close my eyes and relive the emotion and experience of walking into their taproom.

These anecdotes illustrate the importance of story – of meaning – in branding. Compelling brands not only tell a great story, they invite you to be a part of it. Through a quality product, through an experience, through the story you create for yourself.

Seth Godin wrote about this a while back and highlights that we can’t even quite explain to ourselves this personal attachment we have with brands. Often it’s buried deep into our sub-conscious, but that experience, that feeling, it’s there. In every flip of the page, every stroke of the key, every sip from a pint, lies a story.

To quote Godin:

“Great marketers don’t make stuff. They make meaning.” [tweet this]

What meaning are you making? What story are you telling? What story do you want me to tell?

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