The Art of UX Storytelling: How to Create Your Brand Story Online
Marketers are always trying to tell their brand story online. People purchase from companies they're invested in, and today, more and more purchases are happening online. When creating a great user experience, it’s important to portray your brand story at every step of the users’ journey. User research methods help you learn more about your visitors, letting you create a brand story online that focuses on them.
Why Storytelling Is Important for the User Experience of Your Website
Whether you’re a marketer, web designer or a UX consultant, the brand story is at the center of your efforts. When creating a mobile app, website or even a social post, you should always ask yourself - how can I tell a story?
Why is storytelling effective? Stories allow the reader to connect their life with the writer’s. This can make your users more invested in your product or service because it gives them an emotional response to your brand. Storytelling also makes your brand more memorable. When the narrative of your brand is crafted the right way, you can make emotional, memorable connections with your customers.
The big challenge becomes how to translate your brand story on your website or your web application. That’s where user experience research comes in. Through various user research methods, you’ll learn exactly who you’re targeting, what their pain points are and what messaging is resonating with them.
How to Create Your Brand Story Through User Research Methods
UX research takes the guesswork out of marketing. When it comes to sharing your brand story in clear and powerful way, user research can help.
Use UX Research to Connect With Your Audience’s Life - They’re the Main Character
When you begin to translate your brand story to your website, you need to connect with your audience’s current situation and their lives. Your website needs to make users imagine themselves in the story. Here are a few ways to do this through UX research.
Use Personas During the UX Design Process
Whether you have an internal UX team or are working with a UX consultant, one of the first steps is to develop personas. You need to determine your audience demographics to learn who you are telling the story to. While your marketing team has an idea of who the target audience is, it’s best to put it on paper. Identify not only the basic demographics of age, gender and location, but also what they’re feeling in the moment they are looking for your service.
Some UX consultants do this through a user research method known as empathy mapping. Empathy maps typically consist of four buckets: seeing, thinking, feeling and doing. To complete an empathy map, you, your team or your UX agency will brainstorm what your user is seeing when they are thinking about contacting you and what they’re feeling in the moment they need your service.
For example, if you’re a pest control company, you can imagine your user might be feeling panic and urgency when visiting your website if they need pests eliminated quickly. By putting yourself in the user’s mindset, you can start to craft a story and website messaging that is relevant to them and one they can relate to. Knowing these are your users, which brand story do you think would be more effective? One that focuses on affordability or one centered around getting the issue resolved quickly? We’d choose messaging about the speed and efficiency of the pest control company, but that’s up to you.
Use UX Copy to Address the Conflict Your Audience is Experiencing
When bringing your brand story to life on your website, you need to align your site with the challenges your users face and hope your product or service will solve. This is the plot of your story, and the copy on your site helps you tell it.
Many times, conveying your understanding of the customer’s situation can be accomplished through UX microcopy. Microcopy refers to words that help visitors navigate, use and enjoy the website or application. Every word in the interface matters when it comes to your brand story, and you need to make use of every space.
Your page headings, descriptions, error messages and confirmation messages should be useful and human. Whether the content is there to ask a user to sign up for a newsletter or to confirm a purchase, each word needs to align with your greater brand story. Users aren’t coming to your website just to be informed; they have a question, a problem or a task in front of them, and it’s your company’s job to align your site and brand story with their needs.
Utilize User Experience Research to Determine the Time and Location of Your Users
Every story needs a setting! Through user testing and focus groups, you can learn when and where users need your product or service. Are users on the go when searching for your company? Do they take weeks to research multiple competitors, or are they making a quick decision? These questions play a role in the type of brand story you’re telling and how you tell it.
UX Research Helps You Tell the Perfect Brand Story
When you learn more about your users and how they behave on your site, you can craft a relevant story users feel invested in. This is where potential customers become loyal buyers. If you’re interested in learning how to craft a brand story on your website, the user experience consultants at Blue Compass can help. From imagery to calls-to-action, we’ll align your website and your brand story with your users.