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How Virgin Wins With A Better Story

Good Story means something worth telling
that the world wants to hear. ~ Robert McKee

Every time a customer encounters your marketing they are filling in the blanks. Their perceptions about your business are being etched in their minds and if you’re doing a great job, in their hearts too over time. All marketing beings with a great story. A true story that your customers want to believe in.

You are telling your story with design on your website and words in your copy. Piece by piece from your product to premises, packaging to profile photo, music to mission statement, you are sending out clues about what it means to do business with you.

Every detail of your story
is part of the interface between you and your customer

Over the weekend here in Australia, our national airline was grounded in an attempt to settle a longstanding dispute over pay. The entire fleet of 108 aircraft stopped flying, leaving passengers both here and abroad stranded. A story and reputation built over decades was shattered in one day. All the taglines, refurbished lounges and commitment statements will not save you if the rest of your story doesn’t add up.

Virgin has just repositioned itself as a real alternative to Qantas for the business traveller. Virgin tells an upbeat story about improved standards, fabulous staff, putting customers at the centre of everything they do and then sprinkles it with the magic of red high heeled shoes (which Virgin Atlantic is bringing back for stewardesses). Their response to the Qantas crisis (extra flights, access to lounges and information about stranded passenger discounts), shows customers that their brand is living the story not just telling it.

Image by Kevin H.

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