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Use a Simple Story to Communicate Complex Ideas

Children's books are often filled with complex ideas and messages, but they’re presented in ways that young readers can easily understand. Authors like J.K. Rowling and Rick Riordan created epic narratives aimed at teaching children the power of bravery and standing up for what they believe in. Classics like Judy Blume’s Are You There, God? It’s Me, Margaret brought humor to the scary topic of growing up. These authors realized they could package difficult themes in colorful and digestible stories to help young people understand and relate to them.

This approach can be helpful for teams looking to clearly communicate their organization’s brand story. We often see businesses trying to speak to multiple audiences at once or filing their narrative with too many characters, confusing themselves and their audience. Brand stories don’t need to be complex. Narrow it down to bare bones for a concise narrative.

Even Albert Einstein said, “If you can’t explain something simply, you don’t understand it well enough.” Ensure you understand your brand well enough to explain it in plain terms and consider the following as you develop messaging to depict your brand story.

  • Avoid using technical terms or complicated vocabulary that might confuse or bore your audience. Instead, use simple words and sentences that are easy to understand and remember.

  • Children's books often tell a simple and relatable story that captures the imagination of young readers. Follow their example by using characters, settings, and plotlines that are easy to understand and identify with. Focus on themes and messages that resonate with your audience.

  • Don’t overpopulate your narrative. All you need to tell a compelling story is one hero (your organization) and one villain (the problem your organization solves). Focus on identifying those two characters rather than trying to build a whole world.

  • Develop a memorable visual identity that captures your audience’s attention and complements your narrative. Use design elements that reflect your organization’s personality and values. Create engaging visual content that brings the brand story to life and makes it more memorable.

  • Emphasize the emotional connection between your organization and your audience. Use relatable stories, engaging messaging, and heartfelt messages that create a relationship with the audience, making your brand story more memorable and impactful.

By simplifying your brand story, your organization can communicate its message more effectively, build stronger relationships with its audience, and ultimately achieve its business objectives. Look to your favorite children's books for examples of simplified storytelling. Note the themes, lessons, characters, and settings. How many of each are there? How easy are they to identify? Notice the illustrations and how they work to further the narrative and its themes.

Because you know your organization’s mission, vision, audience, and roadblocks intimately, you may feel the need to express every nuance and facet of your organization’s identity. But literature doesn’t need to be complex in order to communicate complex ideas. Nor does your brand story need to be complicated to convey the intricate details of an organization’s personality.

As your audience gets to know the organization, they will begin to see those intricacies. In the meantime, by using concise language, telling a simple story, and emphasizing the emotional connection, you can create a brand story that resonates with every member of your audience, from initial introductions to longtime partnerships. You’ll capture more than their attention; you’ll capture their imagination.

Struggling to identify those few key characters or need help simplifying your story? Connect with us, and we can help you on your journey!


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