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  • Writer's pictureWendy Jones

The Power of Authentic Storytelling: How to Connect Customers with Your Ethical Brand

In today’s marketplace, authenticity and ethics are buzzwords we hear everywhere. But how can we be sure that the companies we buy from are all that they seem?

Simply stating credentials on a website went out with the dinosaurs. And in this new information age of accessibility and availability, it’s the details we want!

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not talking about pages and pages of business blurb. Let’s face it, that’s just plain boring, and most of us have the attention span of a distracted gnat these days. 

No, what I mean is building connection — fast!

An arch of pebbles making the connection from one stone to another on the beach. Make the connection to your perfect customer with storytelling

Think about reading your favourite magazine or that cheeky bestseller you picked up at the airport last holiday. You open it up, and you’re in. It has you hooked in the first sentence, and you want to know what happens next.

That’s the kind of connection I’m talking about.

So how do you do that?

With stories of course!

Don’t worry, I’m not suggesting you sit down and furiously pen the next science-fiction sensation. These stories are those that demonstrate to your audience exactly what you can do for them. But without fluff, fuss, or heaps of tech speak or terminology — c’mon, we don’t want to lose them now you’ve done the hard work of getting them here. And that means not sending them to sleep either!

Let’s take a look at a few ways you can incorporate storytelling into your marketing to build stronger connections:

Telling Your Story

Why do you do what you do? {That’s a lot of do’s in one sentence!}

A film clapperboard on a blue background with the words "What's Your Story" written across it.

You’ve built an ethical brand for a reason, and most self-respecting customers will want to know what that reason is. Okay, okay, it’s a given that the About section of your website is really about your reader. But that doesn’t mean it’s not about you too!

And your story is a commodity too valuable to be languishing in the archives of a social media post or two.

Recounting your journey compels your reader to travel down the road apiece with you. Your story highlights what you have in common with your reader. It shows your transparency and your passion for what you do.

As Blair Warren famously said:

“People will do anything for those who encourage their dreams, justify their failures, allay their fears, confirm their suspicions and throw rocks at their enemies.”

If your story is ticking even one of those boxes, then your reader is already walking alongside you.

Painting a Picture in Their Mind’s Eye

Sunset scene where one person holds up their hands to support another. This symbolises building trust with your reader.

As an ethical business owner, you surely have a clear vision of where your business is going, and why. But conveying that image to an audience comes with challenges.

Ethical consumers choose where to spend their hard-earned cash based on believability {and proof, but we’ll come to that later}. In other words, they need to be persuaded of your conviction, your sincerity, and your ability to deliver on your promises.

Have you ever read those Vision and Mission statements that sound like they came straight out of Business School 101? You know the ones I mean. If carbon copies were still a thing, they would be printed on the yellow paper at the back you could hardly read. Necessary, but dull and uninspiring.

Using authentic storytelling can help you convey what drives the heart of your business to your prospective clients in a way that’s credible and believable.

Let’s take the example of a dentist who specialises in complex repairs:

101 Style –

At Starry Smiles, our vision is to provide ethical, accurate treatments for everyone who needs them. And our mission is to make you smile.

Clear, but dry… let’s try:

Storytelling style –

No one loves a visit to the dentist, we get that. And, from our years working with complex cases, we understand that if you’ve been plagued with tooth problems, that dislike often turns to dread.

That’s why, here at Starry Smiles, we ensure you get the star-studded treatment you deserve, every time. From the moment we welcome you at the door, you’ll notice the difference. You’ll benefit from the best, most appropriate treatments for your needs and the only time you’ll sigh with relief is when you get the bill. We guarantee we’ll make you smile!

See how speaking to the reader directly forms an instant connection? Let’s find out how to capitalise on that by…

Telling Your Customers’ Stories

When you’ve formed that connection with your reader, the next thing they’ll be looking for is proof. You’ve told your story and they’re loving what they found so far. Now all you need to do is show them…

Your reader wants to know HOW you do what you do. But here’s the thing, I don’t mean which nuts and bolts you use, zzzz! 

Two hands stretch across to touch fingertips - make that connection!

What they’re dying to know is how:

  • Interact and collaborate

  • Create rapport

  • Build trust

  • Deliver results

For that, there’s nothing better than a good old-fashioned customer story!

I don’t mean the usual, “we did this and then we did that” dull case study. Does anyone actually read those apart from the person who wrote them anyway?

No, I mean a real customer story. A tale of how you helped your customer solve their problem with epic soundbites from your customer. A story that makes your uniqueness shine. So that it’s easy for your reader to imagine themselves working with you.

If you work with clients in diverse sectors or offer a varied range of products, the more customer stories you have to support your marketing, the better!

Of course, there are lots of other places in your marketing that you can use storytelling to compel your readers to take action.

But as an ethical business, how far do you go to persuade someone to buy from you?

Balancing Values and Persuasion

Let’s address the elephant in the room. 

A hand holding a small old-fashioned scale - the symbol of balance.

As an ethical business owner, you still need people to buy your products or services. And, in most cases, that means some form of persuasion is required

Let’s face it unless you’re selling toilet paper, most folks need to get out of their own way to press the [BUY] button — even if the product and the time are perfect for them.

And that’s the beauty of authentic storytelling! By being honest about who you are, laying your cards on the table, and building a natural rapport with your audience you are staying true to your values.

It’s not about persuading everyone to buy from you, it’s about convincing those who are a perfect fit, that you are the one for them.

Let’s sum up…

  • Using authentic storytelling to market your ethical business is a no-brainer

  • Building connection, rapport and trust are all easier if you use storytelling techniques

  • Storytelling can be used almost everywhere, great places to start are your vision, mission and About sections

  • Telling your customer stories offers your readers tangible proof of what you’re offering

  • Using honest and sincere stories in your marketing persuades the right customers to buy without compromising your values

Of course, for these techniques to work, you need to know who your ideal clients are, and what they want. And that’s the subject of a whole other blog!

Wendy Ann Jones - voice of customer copywriter

Hi, I’m Wendy, voice of customer copywriter, storyteller and customer experience expert. If you’d like to chat about incorporating storytelling into your marketing, then I’m your gal! Drop me a line at or book a quick connect call and let’s chat!

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