The BLD Blog

A collection of building materials marketing trends and insights focused on helping building product manufacturers BLD their brand.

Write Your Own Story

image of an open book

Article Date: June 15, 2020

By Jeff Donaldson

Think back to the last time you had the opportunity to read a story to a small child.

Notice how their eyes lit up? How they hung on a every word?

There’s a reason for it. When well written and effectively told, stories have meaning. They have impact. They’re memorable.

From Tatooine in Star Wars to Hogwarts in Harry Potter, powerful stories told through film have transported us to new worlds and mesmerized us with tales of adventure and mystery.

Think good storytelling is only effective in children’s books or fantasy film?

Think it doesn’t apply to building materials manufacturers (BMMs)?

Think again.

In fact, if you are not consistently firing up a storytelling engine for your brand – one fueled by careful planning, constant story mining and a robust engagement strategy – you’re quite simply missing out on a powerful way to lure and win customers.

Begin at the Beginning

To get started, you need to confirm your organization’s voice. What does it sound like? Is it effectively addressing your key audiences with the right descriptors, differentiators, and value propositions?

In other words, do people know what you do well, why that’s important, and how you are different?

At BLD Marketing, we execute a methodical process with our clients to help them locate and refine their voice so it is compelling and consistent across paid, earned, and owned media strategies.

Just like laying a solid foundation for a new building.

It’s All About Characters

Forrest Gump. Huckleberry Finn. Miranda Priestley.

In books and in the movies, people identify with characters – their personalities, their motivation, their determination, and their will.

Who and what are the characters in your organization, the ones who can help you tell your story in a meaningful way?

For BMMs, your “characters” are your innovations, the solutions you have engineered that have solved critical problems for specifiers, architects, builders, developers, and contractors. Perhaps your product ups the ante when it comes to aesthetics. Maybe your new solution changes the conversation about performance and energy efficiency.

The key is to capture the stopping power of your innovation and look at it through the lens of stakeholders who can benefit from it.

Your characters are also your people, your subject matter experts. They possess valuable insight and perspective on not only your company but on the industry in general and on the trends that are driving it.

When they speak, you are heard. Your organization becomes a thought leader. And you build crucial credibility for everything you are doing.

Locating your characters – and letting them raise their voice – makes all the difference.

BLD Marketing helps you identify and showcase your characters on a continuous basis so you can share your organization’s story on a variety of different platforms.

A Bigger Options Box

In the not-too-distant past, you only had a few options when it came to how you tell your story.

Put out a press release. Pitch a story to the media. Get an interview for one of your people.

Smart marketers take those traditional tactics and build on them with new and powerful ones to create a synergistic program that is primed for the long haul and focused on resonating with your prospects and customers.

At the center of this continuum is great content, backed by sources of authority, authenticity, and concrete examples.

Put another way, you need content that is curated, perfected, and shared by you.

From marketing automation and digital engagement to social media and more, today’s media universe gives you multiple ways to engage audiences on your terms with stories that are representative of your brand. All of it is backed by the great work you’ve done, and it’s all in your company’s voice.

Make a commitment to do this consistently, and you will build trust and affinity with current customers and prospects. That leads to loyalty and the growth of your business.

Ready to put pen to paper?

Or, would you rather someone else speak for you?

At BLD Marketing, we work with our clients to ensure they own their organization’s story.

Let us help you harness the power of great storytelling.

About the Author
Jeff Donaldson is senior vice president of PR and content marketing for BLD Marketing. A communications professional with 30 years of experience, he has held senior-level communications and marketing positions for nearly 20 years. This includes stints at a global PR agency, a global engineering firm, a top-rated privately held agency and a private college. He specializes in strategic planning, core messaging, media relations, organizational and executive communications, crisis communications, and media training. Jeff has planned and executed multi-faceted programs for a number of brands in the building and construction space, and his work has won numerous industry awards. Before his time in PR and marketing, Jeff spent more than a decade as a TV and radio news anchor and reporter and won six Associated Press awards for outstanding reporting.

BLD Marketing is a results-based, digitally-focused, full-service strategic marketing firm exclusively serving the commercial and residential building materials category.