Content marketing storytelling: the hero’s journey

Everybody loves a hero! Think of any of your favourite stories and you’ll realise that there’s a hero in it that you identify with. Or, look at Britain’s love affair with football: the strong association with a team of ‘heroes’ and the chance to be part of their journey to victory creates an emotional connection and loyalty that can last a lifetime.

This is the connection that we, as marketers, actively pursue by creating a brand story based on ‘the hero’s journey’.

The hero’s journey story structure has been around for a long as stories have been told.

The basic formula is:

  • the hero embarks on a journey
  • the hero encounters and deals with obstacles
  • the hero is changed

We all hope that the hero wins at the end, and in brand stories, we want our product or service to be part of a positive change as the hero wins the day.

Who should be the hero of the story?

In a hero brand story, our hero can either be the customer or the brand. If the customer is positioned as the hero, the product or service is the helper—the sidekick or the mentor (the Obi-Wan Kenobi of the story)—that makes victory possible. If the brand is the hero, the product or service arrives and saves the day for the customer—who, at the end, identifies with, is inspired by or is influenced by the hero.

Who’s the hero in your stories? Let us know with a comment…

Make your content better by following the hero’s journey

Whether you decide to have the customer win by choosing your brand and becoming the hero, or you ride in and save the day, to take advantage of this connection with your customers, all you have to do is identify the number one obstacle your product or service helps your customer overcome.

Take that information and plug it into the simple formula of journey, obstacle, change, victory. Your brand story will position you in the customer’s hero journey, resulting in an emotional connection, potential conversion, and loyalty.

1 reply
  1. Dr. Elliot McGucken
    Dr. Elliot McGucken says:

    Cool work! You’ll also love the words and videos here regarding Hero’s Journey Mythology: :

    The same classical values guiding the rising artistic renaissance will protect the artists’ intellectual property. The immortal ideals which guide the story of blockbuster books and movies such asThe Matrix, Lord of the Rings, Braveheart,The Chronicles of Narnia, and Star Wars, are the very same ideals underlying the United States Constitution. These classic ideals–which pervade Homer, Plato, Shakespeare, and the Bible–are the source of both epic story and property rights, of law andbusiness, of academia and civilization.

    It is great to witness classical ideals performed in Middle Earth, upon the Scottish Highlands, long ago, in a galaxy far, far, away, and in Narnia, but too, such ideals must be perpetually performed in the contemporary context and living language.


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