Employment11 Apr 2023
The power of storytelling in Employer Branding content production
In the current competitive environment for talent, it is imperative to distinguish your employment proposition to secure the right candidates. And one of the most effective types of content to showcase your Employer Brand is employee stories. Storytelling helps forge an authentic and trusted connection between your organisation and prospective employees. At Belong Creative we’ve helped many corporations to build magnetic Employer Brands through compelling and captivating human stories that build credibility and inspire action.
Authentic storytelling in Employer Branding
For organisations, storytelling offers a powerful and impactful method of conveying your distinctive brand characteristics to your workforce, customers and stakeholders. It serves as an effective tool to articulate your Employee Value Proposition (EVP) and captivate the attention of both existing and prospective employees.
So why are stories such a powerful way of communicating ideas? Ever since humans have started using language to communicate, stories have been an integral way to remember our experiences, to make sense of the world around us, and ensure learning is handed down to others.
Organisations must communicate their value proposition with conviction to establish a strong market position. Storytelling represents a persuasive and engaging platform to express an authentic and intricate experience that can cut through the clutter and differentiate an employer from its rivals.
When presented as Employer Branding content, authentic employee storytelling is a powerful means of evoking positive emotions and values alignment in prospective hires, further motivating their decision to join the organisation.
Why is storytelling important?
To establish your organisation as an exemplary employer, it is critical to showcase your unique attributes, benefits and value proposition to potential employees. But people don’t want the corporate blurb, they want a grounded, real and human version of these critical elements of the employee experience. People trust people, much more than corporations. This is why storytelling is so important!
Companies achieve differentiation and position themselves as an ideal place to work through the development and execution of an Employer Branding strategy that leverages the power of storytelling.
By effectively narrating your Employer Brand's story, you can remove barriers to entry, offer a glimpse into your inner workings, and highlight the distinctive qualities that set you apart. The outcome of this approach is attracting and retaining the ideal workforce, individuals who share your vision and aspirations and are committed to realising them alongside you.
Developing and implementing a robust Employer Brand storytelling strategy yields a plethora of advantages, such as:
1. You are gaining the attention of prospective talent and inspiring them to join your organisation.
2. You are moving them through the decision-making process as passive candidates.
3. You are setting yourself apart from competitors in your market segment by offering human-based content and narratives.
4. You are demonstrating to top-tier, sought-after talent why your company is a better fit for them than a near competitor.
5. You are showcasing how your organisation's vision, purpose, and mission come to life day-to-day.
6. Attracting candidates who share your values and have a strong affinity for contributing to the stories you tell.
7. You are generating heightened demand and interest in your open role/positions without the need to actively pay to source new talent and traffic.
Effective Employer Branding storytelling techniques
Compelling storytelling is a craft that demands a rare combination of creativity and the capacity to unearth captivating narratives from within an organisation. Employing specific proven techniques to make a compelling library of Employer Branding stories is essential.
Let’s now explore several powerful methods for crafting inspiring Employer Brand narratives in light of this.
Organisations tend to favour a particular personality type or set of traits in their potential hires, which collectively form the target candidate personas. To effectively communicate your Employer Brand, it is essential to identify and comprehend the type of talent or individuals that have the attributes you wish to attract.
This involves gaining insights into their personalities, values, needs and interests, both demographically and psychographically. Furthermore, it is imperative to determine the media platforms that your target audience uses to consume content. Decisions must not be based on instinctive reactions but instead researched and analysed to maximise the effectiveness of your storytelling strategy. For example, one segment of your talent pool may hang out on Tik Tok and Instagram, whereas others are on LinkedIn.
A vital step to building your storytelling library entails crafting a distinctive Employer Value Proposition (EVP) that sets you apart from other industry players. What unique offerings and qualities do you possess that are unavailable elsewhere?
Delving into your company culture through employee research to identify elements that appeal to your audience is vital to this exercise. Compiling fascinating stories from within your organisation to explain your uniqueness and appeal is crucial to this process.
One effective way to develop a magnetic Employer Brand is by using strategic pillars to inspire story themes for creating Employer Branding content.
Strategic EVP pillars developed through employee experience proof points are integral for foundational storytelling. Most EVPs have 3-5 strategic pillars that are authentic, relatable and differentiating. By prioritising stories around these pillars, Employer Brand marketers can more easily craft content that emphasises their exceptional strengths, values and unique qualities, drawing in potential and existing employees who align with those values more easily.
As one embarks on the task of crafting a story, whether it be through written or visual means, it is crucial to bear in mind the essential components of exceptional storytelling. It is imperative to consider one's intended audience and the individuals who will engage with the narrative.
When developing brand stories, it is vital to incorporate the critical elements of a compelling storyline, such as prominent characters, captivating themes, a journey that solves a problem, a climax or transformation with resolved conflicts.
To optimise your Employer Branding, actively sourcing and incorporating real-life perspectives (not just the rose-coloured-glasses version, but the toughest challenges as well) from within your organisation is a highly effective strategy. By gathering your employees' diverse range of insights and experiences, you gain access to a wealth of authentic perspectives that can significantly enhance the depth and authenticity of your brand identity, ultimately building credibility and trust.
Leveraging these stories and insights will enable you to shape a more comprehensive and compelling brand narrative, ultimately strengthening your Employer Brand and driving greater engagement and loyalty among your target audience.
Effective brand storytelling techniques may not always resonate with your intended audience. Hence, it is crucial to continually evaluate the engagement of your branded content, experiment with new variations and messaging, and hone your approach based on data. It is imperative to establish key performance indicators and to report timelines to ensure team accountability and continuous assessment of the effectiveness of your brand storytelling techniques. This approach is fundamental to maintaining a professional and successful Employer Brand communication strategy.
The benefits of storytelling in Employer Branding content production
In our contemporary world, the traditional practice of ‘telling stories’ has evolved into a powerful tool for organisations to attract, engage and retain talented individuals who want to thrive in their chosen workplaces. By telling their unique stories authentically and thoughtfully, companies can differentiate themselves from their competitors and showcase their distinctive value proposition.
This approach enables organisations to influence top talent to consider their work options and accept an offer over a rival's, providing more than just a simple invitation to join the team but also an opportunity to demonstrate why they are the ideal choice. Job seekers are increasingly demanding, and storytelling provides employers a unique avenue to meet their needs and desires.
Establishing trust within an organisation is pivotal to cultivating a thriving corporate culture. One practical approach to instilling trust is sharing employee stories internally throughout the organisation, which can be a powerful means of connecting with individuals and the collective workforce. In particular, showcasing stories of volunteerism, corporate social responsibility and everyday heroes can foster a more profound sense of trust and community within the organisation. By doing so, organisations can enhance their relationships with employees and strengthen their ties to local communities and society.
Leveraging employee stories can serve as an effective tool in attracting and engaging prospective candidates who align with your organisational culture. Skillfully moulding stories that authentically reflect your company's values, mission, and strategically support your Employer Brand can facilitate the recruitment of talent who share a common perspective and are highly compatible with your distinctive corporate culture.
How to incorporate storytelling in Employer Branding content production
Here are some valuable recommendations on how to integrate storytelling into your Employer Branding content creation:
Firstly, identify your organisation's unique story, encompassing its history, values, and culture. This will aid in crafting a compelling story that sets your company apart from others.
Secondly, incorporate real-life examples of employees who embody the company's values or have succeeded. These stories get conveyed through diverse mediums, such as written testimonials, videos, or social media posts.
Thirdly, focusing on the candidate's perspective when creating Employer Branding content is crucial. Understanding what candidates are curious about and addressing their concerns through the employee content can be highly effective.
Where possible, use employee generated content to add even more authenticity to your Employer Branding content. Sometimes this sort of raw content can be even more credible than highly produced creative content as it feels spontaneous and real.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Do brands create stories, or do stories create brands?
The relationship between stories and brands is balanced. The stories that companies tell can also shape their audience's perception, influencing how they view and interact with the brand. When a company's story resonates with its audience, it can establish a deep emotional connection that fosters trust and loyalty, ultimately establishing a strong brand identity and reputation.
Q. How does content marketing relate to storytelling?
The correlation between content marketing and storytelling is undeniable, as storytelling plays a pivotal role in the success of content marketing. The practice of content marketing involves creating and disseminating valuable and pertinent content to attract and engage a specific target audience. Not all content marketing is story-based. On the other hand, storytelling is an art form employed to convey a message or information through the narrative structure. Storytelling, when used in content marketing, elevates the level of engagement for the audience and creates a lasting impact.
Q. Is there a way to measure the ROI of storytelling in Employer Branding?
Assessing the return on investment (ROI) of storytelling in Employer Branding can be daunting, given its multifaceted nature and the various factors influencing the outcome. Nonetheless, several ways exist to gauge the efficacy of storytelling in employer branding, including:
Keep tabs on engagement metrics such as likes, comments, shares and followers on social media platforms and other digital channels. These metrics can lend insight into the impact of your storytelling endeavours and the extent to which they resonate with your intended audience.
Observe website traffic and track the proportion that stems from your storytelling content. This can offer an insight into your storytelling's effectiveness in driving traffic to your website.
Time spent on the page:
Monitor the time users spend on pages featuring your storytelling content. This can furnish valuable insights into how captivating your storytelling is and how much value it delivers to the reader.