“I can only note that the past is beautiful because one never realises an emotion at the time. It expands later, and thus we don’t have complete emotions about the present, only about the past.” — Virginia Woolf, author.

I don’t know about you, but I love history. Especially when it’s told well. When I research the past, it is as if someone has given me the keys to a door that, when opened, reveals an array of relics that need to be explored.

And each relic, each piece of clothing, each book, each object has its own story begging to be shared. Even cooler, each part of the past reveals something about the present. Perhaps how far we’ve come in technology, what we’ve learned, any kind of practical lesson. We learn something.

With all that said, in school, I hated history. Because: it. was. boring.

We learned from a book. The information was, well, information that had no relevance to the present. At least, none that I could see. The presentation from my teachers was dry. The history lesson was all a routine.

But learning history on my own, starting with dates and time periods that interested me, began my journey into the past that I learned to enjoy.

What does all this have to do with brand storytelling?


What our past teaches us about our present

A lot of us share stories from the past. Our family history, our younger days, our experiences all shape who we become. And we learn to tell the stories interestingly because we find them intriguing.

But with brand storytelling, we share stories that show others how they will benefit in the present and beyond.

One way for our company or author story to be effective is to look at the past. See where we started. How our passion prompted us to start our journey. Where are we today because of that passion?

What lessons did we learn that we can share with others? Based on our experience(s), what was the outcome or product or service we created to benefit others? What challenges are we saving others from because of turning our mistakes into a viable solution?


Be vulnerable, be honest, in sharing your past

Being honest about our past does not mean we tell all. Some information should be left behind a locked door, or it is simply too much information.

But we endear ourselves to the people who grew an empire from nothing. People who were the lesser known, who had amazing ideas and had to fight corporations to bring their incredible creations to the world.

Tell those stories. People crave to see themselves in something — and someone — real.

If you can, share images and stories on your website and in your marketing that show your business from humble beginnings to where it is — or where you are — today.

Tell your company birth story and show your relevance to make your impact. Your past is your emotional attachment to build loyalty and create a connection.

Our past shapes who we become and what our organization’s mission and purpose are. Sharing our unique history endears our customers and clients to us. We reveal our lessons learned and experiences to help others. Our vulnerability and honesty endear us emotionally to our connections.

(Photo by Suzy Hazelwood from Pexels)

Need help telling your business or author story? My brand training helps you live your brand by recognizing your story and learning how to use it effectively to enhance engagement and increase sales. Find out more here and book a call with me!