In the Field

The Power of Real Stories

by Derek Baune

As a kid, I dreamed of being a world-famous hunting celebrity, just like the ones I used to watch on the Outdoor Channel. I have to admit, the idea of getting paid to hunt by corporate sponsors certainly had its appeal.

Now that I am grown and making my own outdoor brand purchases, I see the importance of another kind of company spokesperson—the average Joe and Jane. Yes, celebrity endorsements still carry a lot of weight with consumers (just ask anyone who follows Jim Shockey, Tom Miranda or Lee and Tiffany Lakosky), but more and more outdoor enthusiasts are creating their own community of followers.

The key to creating these communities, whether it’s with celebrities or hunters like you and me, is the ability to tell an authentic story that people can relate to. Give me gritty content in any form—photographs, video or the written word—just make it compelling and believable.

Authentic stories are the most powerful way to connect to your customers. In fact, many of your customers are actively seeking stories that transport them to the place and the activities they love. Monday through Friday, they’re sitting chained to a desk (figuratively, of course). It is your story that gives them hope for the weekend. It creates a longing for the trail, water, mountain or wide-open prairie. More importantly, it generates demand for your brand.

The key is to create emotionally-connective stories that your customers can relate to. Tell people how your company got started. Why does your business exist? What is the biggest challenge you’ve ever overcome? How does your brand make the world a better place? Telling these stories, openly and honestly, builds trust and inspires others to join your community.

If executed correctly and consistently, your posse will grow quickly. Before you know it, some impressionable kid will be saying, “I wish I could do that.”

If you’re lucky, they will grow up to tell your brand story.

To learn more on how Migrate Outdoor can help you tell your brand story and connect with more customers, contact us.