StoryBranding Your Farm

I have marketing dilemma causing me to wake up at nights in cold sweats — I somehow need to get an extra five thousand people to come to our farm in June.  This is because Dan rashly planted an extra 4 acres last spring, hoping to finally beat me in our running contest to out-grow or out-sell eachother.  

In order to ratchet up my marketing campaign, I’ve been studying information put out by Donald Miller, of StoryBrand.  He says that we need to “clarify our message so that our customers will listen.”  First of all, he has a ‘grunt test’ for our websites.  Would a caveman look at our website and grunt while looking away, because he can’t figure out what we are selling?  We need to make it absolutely clear on the front page what we are selling.   

Then, he says we need to change our marketing story so that we talk about our customers as the hero and brand ourselves as the guide.  

“In other words, your audience is Luke Skywalker. You get to be Yoda.  It’s a small but powerful shift. This honors the journey and struggles of our audience, and it allows us to provide the product or service they need to succeed.”

If you have too many customers and not enough product, you do not need this message.  If you are in a growth stage, this might be the marketing help that propels you to reach your sales goals.  

To fully understand the elements of a story, and how you can leverage them in your marketing, you should read the book StoryBrand, by Donald Miller.  He helps you write a ‘brandscript’ for your business that you can use in all your marketing materials.  He walks you through identifying the internal and external things that motivate your customers to come to your place of business, and helps you craft words that will cause them to love your business and propel them to action.  

After writing my brandscript  two weeks ago,  I re-did my website, and started an email campaign to my strawberry customers.  Usually, the first emails of the season stress me out, because I get questions from customers about pricing, or dates that I’m not ready yet to answer.  By contrast, this year I’ve already received responses from twelve different customers, that I don’t personally know, saying, “thanks for that email!”  I’m floored.  Storybrand seems to be working!

Of course, the real proof will come if I’m able to sell an extra 4 acres of strawberries in June.

With deep appreciation for all of you that farm in creative ways,

Sarah Brouwer

P.S. Curious about my ‘brandscript’? You can view it here.

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