The Story Behind Your Sales

In a timeless book by Seth Godin, “All Marketers Are Liars: The Power of Telling Authentic Stories in a Low-Trust World” Godin didn’t really mean marketers lie, rather that they craft stories that help customers along through the buying cycle.

More specifically, marketers don’t necessarily craft the stories, but set the stage for a shopper to create their own reality. For example, even if the scarf from Neiman Marcus is three times the cost, the shopper leaves the store feeling special. She has convinced herself – told herself the story – that she deserves the finer things in life and the doting customer experience validates that emotional response.

Since ICC/Decision Services works with so many retailers, this got me thinking… What story are you telling? What story are your shoppers telling themselves? Is it a good story or a bad one?

This transcends types of retail operations and transcends the value scale. It doesn’t matter if you are selling discount groceries or boutique art supplies, the story you provide to your customers can go a long way in empowering your brand and improving your revenue stream.

It begins with understanding the customer experience. We’ve talked at length about how perceptions and interactions impact a shoppers average spend. Once you understand that, it is time to develop marketing messages that help the customer carry the experience with them wherever they go.

Validation is sweet. When a customer goes into your store expecting a great value and getting it, and then goes on to see brand messaging that reinforces the high value, it becomes sticky.

That customer takes that experience with them everywhere she goes. She tells her friends. She revisits. Shopping at your store becomes a regular part of her routine. As long as you continue to validate the narrative that the shopper has etched in her own mind, you’ll win again and again. The trick is that you must develop your story and start telling it, over and over again. If you’re not doing this, you need to start!

So…what story are you telling?