I’m often asked by CEOs, executives and academics attending my workshops how they should include storytelling in their personal branding and social media so figured it was high time I got around to doing this question justice.

Firstly, let’s deal with the WHY of storytelling.

People relate to stories. We have since the beginning of all time. Stories allow us to connect and engage with people at a deeper and more emotional level and in the process build trust.

Another great thing about stories is that people remember them. Often, they’ll remember a story ahead of the actual detail of the content.

The other big benefit of storytelling is that it humanises your personal brand.

It’s a well-known fact that people buy into people, not products. By sharing stories about your business and the people behind the scenes, gives your brand personality and makes it easier for people to know who you are, and to understand your values and trust you.

So where relevant, include storytelling in your branding and social media … not to mention in public speaking, on your website and whenever appropriate.

That said, don’t overdo it. There’s nothing more tedious to your audience or connections than to have you over-use what is a great vehicle for communicating your message.

Where to include storytelling

The logical first place to begin storytelling is your personal LinkedIn or other social media profiles. Let people know what prompted you to do what you are doing. What was that catalyst that kickstarted your journey as an entrepreneur, executive or academic?

What is your origin story?

If you are the CEO of a new or fast-growing company, tell people about your big vision and what it is you hope to achieve and how you intend making a difference.

Equally, if you are an academic embarking on new research, tell us about the problem your research is addressing, the actions you are taking and the outcomes you hope to achieve.

Once you’ve set the scene in your profile, take your connections on a metaphorical journey with you. Post about your successes and big milestone but also about the challenges and hiccups along the away.

Keep your connections with you on your journey!

Incorporate storytelling in customer testimonials, case studies and client feedback – whether on your website or in posts or articles on social media. Demonstrate how you or your customer have triumphed over a problem, gained knowledge from an experience or accomplished a big goal.

Another opportunity for including storytelling in your socials, is providing behind-the-scenes video or images from your workplace, laboratory, business or field trip. Let your connections meet the people on your team, find out more about your great culture and the wonderful work you are doing.

Finally, don’t be afraid to be a character in the stories you tell, comments you provide or content you share. Let people know how the topic under discussion or in the public domain has impacted you personally or professionally.

Provide connections with a window into who you really are!

Parker Public relations provides personal branding and LinkedIn coaching and workshops for CEOs, executives, consultants, academics and researchers.

To get in touch: wendy@parkerpublicrelations.com.au or call: 0422 694 503.