What is the future of brand storytelling?
Is marketing creative due for a return to fundamentals? Or has digital so transformed the industry that there’s no going back? TBWA’s Kimberlee Wells, Accenture Interactive’s Adam Kerj, Engine Creative’s Ete Davies, and Essence’s Andrew Shebbeare share their thoughts on how brands will best connect with consumers in the future.
Ete Davies: The future of brand storytelling is in partnership with consumers.
People are creating their own content.
They are interacting with brands and the stories that brands are telling in new ways.
It’s not just enough for a brand to broadcast their story; you have to shape it with your
Kimberlee Wells: I think the future is really not that different to the past.
We told better brand stories in the past than what we’ve been telling.
And I think the reason for that is brands gave way to investing in their brands, chasing
the short-term sales.
In terms of what I think the future is: We are going back to these big brand narratives.
We’re starting to see a shift in where spending is going.
Increasingly brands are wanting to talk about their purpose and, as a result of talking
about their purpose, they need to bring the narrative in.
It’s an exciting time to see brands back.
Andrew Shebbeare: Creative briefs haven’t changed that much in the last 10 years.
I suspect they won't be that different 10 years from now.
I think, inevitably, what will happen is that digital growth will continue, and that will
mean that, for many, many brands, digital is the first channel they plan into rather
than the last.
That means that digital creative assets become the cornerstone for more brands, rather than
the peripheral work that needs to be adapted from a TV asset or from a print campaign.
And I think we're already seeing a generation of brands for whom digital is their anchor
Adam Kerj: I think you really have to figure out what kind of role you want to play in
You really have to understand who they are, where they are, and what they’re doing.
And so I think you really need to provide them with something meaningful that really makes their
lives either more interesting or more relevant or more entertaining, whatever it is.
Finding that purpose and making it really, really relevant and bespoke and tailored to
each one of us, I think that's key.
Ete Davies: The hardest thing to get right when connecting with consumers is authenticity.
Often brands try too hard to tell consumers what they want rather than being true about
what they are as a brand and where they have purpose, because that’s what really resonates.