Authentic storytelling

Focus on authenticity for better customer connection.

By Cassie Marcotte, Associate Marketing Strategy Consultant

A book with string lights in the middle is held open with two hands.

Here’s a secret about your customers: They can smell fake a mile away.

They know the difference between “this phenomenal product increases your productivity” and “this helps you work faster.” And in an era of unlimited content and endless ads, authenticity cuts through the noise.

It’s all too easy for businesses to exist in self-reinforcing bubbles, where everything is aligned and organized by marketing pillars and persona maps and buzzwords. They think in these terms. Write in them. Speak them around the water cooler. We call this the “positioning and messaging language,” and while it does serve an important purpose, organizations can fall into the trap of forgetting to translate it to the real world.

They forget to ask that very real, very human question: How does it really help?

Ditch the clichés

We’ve all seen print ads of four well-dressed young people in an office, standing around a monitor with gigantic, phony smiles. And one of them is always—ALWAYS—pointing at the monitor, like he’s so amazed at whatever he’s looking at that he just has to touch it.

There’s no way those people are so blown away by the newest update to their productivity software that they spontaneously gathered around one computer, mouths agape. There’s nothing authentic about that scenario.

Here's how we do it

To connect with customers, businesses must aspire to authenticity. As a creative agency, we love working with companies that get this. We had an opportunity to work with Microsoft to create a brand video for their Surface launch. Our video team wanted this to be different, organic—a reference to nature. There was a true desire for authenticity, to show real stuff that the Surface can do in the real world.

Check out our behind-the-scenes story below that shows our creative thought process when we produced an award-winning video for Microsoft Surface.

Glaciers in Iceland shown in the Microsoft Surface video

Microsoft Surface: Inking

The Microsoft Surface: Inking video has won several awards since being released, including several ADDYs (American Advertising Awards) and a Telly. The recognition further enforces that this authentic type of storytelling is exactly what customers want to hear.

Want some of this in your marketing? We’re just an email or a phone call away. Drop us a line, we’d love to talk.


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