In Marketing, Storytelling


In two previous entries I spoke about the equation pictured above: E + N = M.

Emotion plus numbers equals momentum. As a brand, you need to first connect with your audience emotionally based on your own core values and purpose as an organization. Then you need to execute elegantly, by the numbers if you will, to give them the services, products and overall experience that delights them.

As you do this each time they have contact with your brand, you will build marketing MOMENTUM.

What is marketing MOMENTUM? Essentially, it is the mindshare that you have with your customers and potential customers. It is an understanding they have of who you are at your core, in your DNA, that they can rely on—the certainty that you will create the same satisfying experience over and over and you will continue to find ways to innovate to improve that offering.

MOMENTUM occurs as more and more people feel your mojo, catch your vision, and sense the dynamo inside you that propels you forward on their behalf.

A hot piece of news in the tech world is that Ann Arbor-based Duo Security has just been bought by CISCO for 2.35B in cash. This is the largest tech acquisition in Michigan’s history and certainly for Ann Arbor. It’s a great affirmation of the fact that innovation can happen anywhere and everywhere—not only in Silicon Valley.

And it’s obviously a phenomenon. It’s not every day that this sort of thing happens.

But even though it may be a once-in-a-million (or trillion) occurrence, there is something for every businessperson and entrepreneur to catch here about MOMENTUM.

Watch this clip for context from Tech Crunch 2017 that features Dug Song, the CEO.

In it, he speaks about the source of Duo’s forward movement—it is the mission to democratize access—to make it safe for everyone…not just for large companies, but every individual around the world—so that everyone’s data can be safe and they can go places online without their security being compromised. And it is this mission and passion that inspires and drives them to “disrupt the disrupters” who try to hack their way into the lives and information of others and cause harm. The time is right for this pursuit in a globalized world where Dug comments, “Not even governments can keep their secrets.”

In his interview, Dug mentions that, because of the power of this mission and the ability of their product to simplify security, they don’t have to do any outreach marketing. Customers and investors have come to them. At that time, their over 10,000 customers tell others. And obviously, a year later, CISCO found them.

Ultimately, all marketing is word-of-mouth recommendation. Someone tells someone of a positive experience that they delight in and the other person decides to try it out. If that experience is a delight, then they’ll tell someone. In this case, Duo didn’t have to do a major marketing campaign to get the word out. Word-of-mouth sent people to them.

And, while as a marketing firm we don’t suggest that in most cases you can only rely on people finding you (by the way, Duo did help generate the video that is part of the Tech Crunch segment, Dug did show up to be interviewed, and on their website you’ll find a robust media kit and newsletter offering,

plus most recently a wonderful letter from Dug about the acquisition, we do want to highlight that identifying and making experiential your core essence, in the case of Duo, “the demo cratization of access” is critical to not only your marketing MOMENTUM but your overall business MOMENTUM. And it doesn’t have to be as viral an idea as Duo’s. Here are two other examples of firms that are animated by their informing principle—one very localized and another artistic.

Kuebler Furniture Works has as its mission “making the past present.” It’s a furniture refinishing firm, also here in Ann Arbor. Kuebler’s dedication to bringing the life and look back to cherished furniture is building them momentum with local contractors and end consumers.

Mira Calix is a British artist innovator. Her core is celebrating curiosity. In the Ode to the Future project, she collaborates with people of the future. Her concept is to take sounds of movement in an ultrasound, (ultrasound uses sound to see things we can’t see), and then takes these sounds and makes new music and new elements that can be both seen and heard. She calls it “a marriage between art, science and technology.” (See if it doesn’t resonate with you, and if you aren’t likely to share it with someone.)

At MOVE, our core is STORY. We believe you can shape the future for good by the stories you tell today. So we work with our customers to tell their story and build MOMENTUM as they shape an inspiring brand for the greater good.

Remember, E + N = M.

Be in touch if you need help putting MOMENTUM in your equation.



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