Storytelling: sell your brand before your products

For Jean-Noël Kapferer, professor at HEC and an expert in internationally renowned brands, companies must first and foremost tell compelling stories.

JNK: The notion of storytelling is a recent one. It reminds us that information is not communication. Communicating is sharing; informing is sending data. So to add an emotional dimension, to facilitate understanding and buy-in, you have to talk of each product as if it were the hero of a saga. Similarly, you have to make the company and its brand stand out. Storytelling is the art of bringing out value. Sell the company and its brand before you sell your products. Sell your values, your vision before your products. Most brands think that to sell themselves they must immediately show what they are selling, i.e. their products. In fact, your audience first wants to know who you are. What kind of enterprise are you? Large or small? What is your origin, what makes you tick, how do you view the market? In other words, why do you exist? Lastly, storytelling is tied to the internet. On the internet and on social networks, people want to know what you talk about when you aren’t talking about your products and services. Is your site simply a product/price catalogue or an invitation to enter into a relationship, to join a community? If you answered “catalogue”, you know that you have your work cut out for you! 



Apax Talks


Apax Talks is a digital magazine aimed at company managers. It presents growth levers for SMEs, with a focus on TMT, consumer, healthcare and services sectors.