3 brands that succeeded by telling powerful stories with video

by Vinnie Romano | 3 years ago

People like stories. It’s the reason politicians insert stories about everyday people to illustrate key points on the campaign trail. Some of those stories are probably true, but some are probably made-up. In any case, it doesn’t really matter. What matters is that they’re relevant and that they connect with their audience.

Storytelling and video: a powerful combination

Forward-thinking marketers understand the power of storytelling and the power of video. They also understand that creating videos which tell compelling stories, when effectively managed and distributed (for example, on key social media sites), can drive website traffic, increase conversions and boost sales. That’s why almost 75% of marketers include video content in their social media campaigns, and 60% planned to increase spending on video marketing in 2017. As Hubspot noted recently:

“This year, we’ve seen the importance of visual content emphasised by the changes that occurred across almost every major social network, including Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, and Twitter. At the same time, videos have become powerful tools for brands looking to communicate more easily with their readers.”

There’s video, and then, there’s video

As powerful as video storytelling via social media is, it’s no guarantee that it will work for your business. Simply stated, some videos work, and others don’t. Creating videos that work means having a specific, measurable marketing goal (like pushing more traffic to your website) and a specific strategy for how the story your video tells on social media will accomplish that goal.

Here are 3 leading brands that did just that:

1. TOMs: And all I have to do is show my feet?

Most consumers can afford to buy TOMs shoes, but millions of struggling families in developing countries can’t. TOMs bet on the social concern of its customer base when it created its annual “One Day Without Shoes” video marketing campaign. The company asked viewers of the video to remove their shoes for one day, a simple step to demonstrate their solidarity with poor people around the world. They also pledged to donate one pair of shoes to a poor child for every pair TOMs customers bought.

The video and the campaign were a huge success on YouTube, a tribute to the power of the marketing concept, and the power of the video which fuelled it. The takeaway: people feel good when they do good, and they feel good about the business which helped them feel that way.

2. Heinz: This soup can has my name on it!

Maybe your mum used to give you chicken soup when you were sick. A lot of people have mums who did, something Heinz seized on with its “Get well soon” storytelling campaign. Heinz created a video to encourage its fans on Facebook to buy a can of soup with the get-well-soon message and personalised the message by adding the name of the recipient, right on the can.

That move, creating a story with which consumers could identify, made the campaign a success. Heinz, like TOMs shoes, then added an appeal to social responsibility. They pledged donations to Starlight (a non-profit which helps terminally-ill children) for every one of their personalised soup cans purchased.

3. Dove: The day my husband met his baby daughter

Dove sells soap, a product which isn’t really all that exciting. For years, Dove has been successful adding flair to its product by shifting focus from what it does to the women who use it, women whose beauty comes from within. That narrative appeals to women who want to be judged less on the basis of how they look, and more on the basis of who they are and the lives they lead.

More recently, Dove reframed its narrative. Instead of focusing on the way their product makes women feel, they began to highlight the men in these women’s lives, like the soldier/father who hasn’t yet seen his 7-month old daughter. Dove engineers the family reunion in this compelling video narrative, part of its “Men + Care” series. Note how the video creates an indelible emotional connection with the women who constitute its target audience, and how those emotions are then seamlessly integrated with its brand promise. Note in addition, that this video has more than 2.5 million views on YouTube!


Successful content marketing is about many things, including understanding your target audience and how to effectively engage them with a compelling story. Video is a powerful medium to help achieve that goal.

To meet your key business objectives, you need a content marketing strategy that’s customised for your business, understanding its unique challenges and needs. To learn more about the ways our content marketing, digital, social, inbound and video marketing services will help you boost sales and grow your business, get in touch.

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