How we mined stories for a multinational corporation’s content hub

Stories are what make us human, and they’re also more important for brands than you might think.

Why finding stories is so important

The Japanese novelist Haruki Murakami wrote ‘civilisation is communication … that which is not expressed does not exist’. Stories are the lifeblood of any community and a company is no different. Some tales become part of the official story, some circulate in the background. We are, in many ways, the stories we tell.

A company’s stories matter more than you think

Stories help define a company’s public presence, brand and mission. But they also help sell your products or services, generating revenue in the process, and somewhat unexpectedly, they’re a critical part of training and internal communications.

The Velcro theory of memory

In their seminal 2007 book Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die (I’d really recommend everyone in the business of communicating get a copy of this book), Chip and Dan Heath talk about the Velcro theory of memory. Basically, the more little hooks you can put into your ideas the better they will stick.

Talking shop

The Heaths talk about how storytelling is at the heart of informal learning in a corporate or professional setting. From medical teams in hospitals to photocopy repair crews, swapping stories about troubleshooting problems helps learning and can even save lives.

Tesla: A study of corporate narratives

Consider the most storied brand of the moment: Tesla. At an investment level it enjoys such a wonderful valuation — against most fundamentals — because it tells the story of a carbon-free future. If you think of other stories around Tesla, it is Elon Musk, his vision and hard work. And the company’s current success is in part due to the dominance of the positive stories and less focus on the negative stories.

Finding your stories

As a journalist, I know from experience if you talk to anyone long enough you will find a story that’s worthy of writing up.

What we found

We thought, we’d build a database of stories that would inform a year-long content calendar. Obvious stuff.

Stories make meaningful brand content

Large conglomerates are generally great at keeping tabs on every cent spent, but up until now there’s never been a huge amount of value placed on the narrative transactions that take place every day.

Does your brand have a story to tell? Let us help you. Talk to our CEO Simon Kearney at



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