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How to use story-telling principles for product descriptions

Here are some story-telling ideas you can use for your business

Stories capture our hearts and imaginations. If you remember television advertisements (who still watches television these days? It’s all about binge-watching Netflix shows now) they all told a story. More importantly, these advertisements targeted a particular emotion or feeling, and tied that to the product. And it worked every time. 

In the days of the internet and we no longer watch (and hardly tolerate) advertisements, so companies find other ways to advertise and market their products. Enter social media, websites, Tik Tok and reels. These have now replaced the traditional television advertisements of old. But the principles of storytelling to sell a product is still the same. 

Humans use stories to connect. Our brain works in pictures and images and it is strongly linked to emotions. So a good quality image of a product and with strong emotional language is what will it “stick” in your audience’s mind. 

After the world was debilitated by the pandemic and everyone was forced to stay home, online shopping increased by 55% and hit a total of $1.7 Trillion according to Forbes. Story-telling was the main vehicle companies used to sell to the masses at home on their PCs and mobiles. 

Storytelling is the most powerful tool in a marketer’s toolbox. It gives meaning to something that is otherwise unfamiliar to your audience. 

Emotion is key when trying to sell. It is how you “reach” your intended audience. It is also the vehicle for building relationships.

So what are the story-telling principles and how to use them for your product descriptions?

To write an effectively good story, you need a hero on a mission, but before they achieve that mission, they have to fight something that gets in their way. 

Using the principles of storytelling draws your audience in as it engages their imagination. This is the same formula Disney follows and all other bestselling books and blockbuster movies, and it works. What many people don’t realise is that the same tools the author uses from their toolbox can also work for a marketer or business owner, as long as you know how to use them.

Let’s break down these elements and how they can apply to your product descriptions or marketing copy. 

1. One feeling or idea

Every story has a hero. This “hero” is the vehicle to connect with your audience to lure them in. 

Start off with a hook to capture your audience, then introduce your hero. Attention spans are short. You only have one or two seconds to capture your reader’s eyes. So a compelling hook with an eye-catching image (for 1 second each) will do the trick.

The hero needs to speak in the audience’s language to be able to connect to them. So avoid jargon (unless you’re selling technical products) and know your audience, and the language that they speak in.

2. Sell three features

When it comes to selling, sometimes less is more. As previously mentioned, people in the online world have a short attention span so you want to make your copy short and snappy. Select the best features of the product that will elevate their experience. Ask yourself: what is it about the product that will make their life easier?

Do not list every single feature as this will confuse your customers. Focus on ONE feeling or idea and choose 3 features that connect to that “hero” feeling or idea.

Don’t forget to include pictures of the three bestselling features. Pictures communicate what your words can’t. And not everyone reads the copy, because some people are more visual and prefer to absorb information through images, while others absorb information through words. Cater to these different types of audiences.

3. Happily ever after

What is the result to their lives after they’ve bought your product? Highlight the difference it will make to their life and how they can “live happily ever after”.

Read more about how to write stories that sell here.

Read more about product descriptions here

Read more about how to attract customers here.

Need help with your marketing copy? Contact me and let’s chat about how we can make your copy shine.