Customers expect high-quality content, so thinking like a media business can reap dividends
“Every single business is a media company,” said Randi Zuckerberg at the World Business Forum in June 2019.
The entrepreneur and Facebook ex-director of marketing was speaking about how to put digital technology to work for your business – how to align your social strategy with your business strategy.
“Our customers expect media content and excellent educational and informative content. And that can be challenging,” she said.
Some of the world’s most successful businesses are overcoming these challenges and thinking like a media owner to grow revenue.
Here are two examples that environmental business can learn from:
Dollar Shave Club
Paul Polman, the ex-boss of Unilever, is well known for championing sustainability before it became fashionable.
But in July 2016, he shocked the business world by purchasing the Dollar Shave Club for $1bn, five times its expected 2016 revenue.
Why did Unilever pay such an unprecedented price tag for cheap razors that were inferior to high-tech brands like Gillette?
The reason wasn’t revenue but Dollar Shave’s Club relationship with customers, which was forged through hilarious video content.
Their first video went viral and got the start-up 12,000 orders in the first 48 hours.
“Dollar Shave Club’s origin story highlights something powerful,” argue Shane Snow and Joe Lazauskas in the book Storytelling Edge.
“The economics of marketing are changing quickly, with great content as the ultimate currency. As a result, brands that embrace great storytelling can achieve an incredible advantage over their competition.”
While plastic bricks might not be the most planet-friendly toy, LEGO’s turnaround is another powerful example of how making storytelling part of your business strategy is a wise investment.
In early 2003 LEGO was in trouble having lost 30% of its turnover in the past year. In 2004, another 10% vanished. The brand was worried that children were now more interested in video games than plastic bricks.
Fast forward 10 years and the first LEGO movie grossed $469m against a $60m budget. LEGO now has successful brand alliances with Harry Potter, Star Wars and Bob the Builder.
Storytelling was critical to the turnaround.
“By infusing storytelling into small plastic bricks the brand came to life,” explains marketing expert Martin Lindstrom, who advises LEGO on its brand strategy.
“LEGO is now one of the 10 most valuable brands across its category, despite being bankrupt 14 years ago,” said Martin at the World Business Forum in June 2019.
Lessons from storytelling brands
Storytelling is not just for consumer brands; it can transform environmental business-to-business marketing as well.
Even if your product is complex and technical, it’s making a difference to the environment and there’s a compelling story to tell.
How the Sustainable Results Lab can help
The Sustainable Results Lab specialises in creating brilliant content for the environmental sector. We use the same principles and tech as some of the world’s best brands.
If you’d like to test how this approach can transform your brand, why not book one of our 90 minutes reviews? All for the price of a sustainably sourced cup of tea. There’s no obligation to work with us after that; it’s your choice.