How powerful storytelling is boosting 'outsider' Party prospects

Achieving cut-through in the media is extremely difficult. But it is more than possible. It requires a great story and the right delivery. Get these two elements nailed and the results can be spectacular, as the Liberal Democrat leader found out this week.

12 June 2024 | 3 min read | PR
Portrait photo of Paul MacKenzie-Cummins
Paul MacKenzie-Cummins

This week, Sam Coates, Deputy Political Editor at SkyNews shared the results of a Sky/YouGov poll. Accordingly, the Lib Dems have made the greatest gains in recent days.

This is partly because they published their manifesto on Monday, but I believe it is more likely because of ‘that’ video.

Last week, Ed Davey, Liberal Democrat Party Leader, shared a powerfully personal video about the struggles he has faced when caring for his mother and disabled son.

The video went viral and won plaudits for raising awareness of the need to support unpaid carers in this country.

But there was more to it than that. It was ‘storytelling’ at its best.

The Telegraph and The Mirror praised him for a “deeply moving campaign video.” Grazia magazine said, “It will move you to tears.” It probably will.

Watch for yourself:

Using storytelling to turn an also-ran into serious contender

We talk at lot at Clearly PR about the power of storytelling in PR, especially when it comes to personal branding and executive profiling. That’s because we’ve had phenomenal success in doing it for clients.

A great example of this is the media relations PR campaign we ran for The Baton of Hope mental health charity in 2023. This generated over 370 pieces of media coverage entirely because we shared the very personal stories of those affected by suicide.

And that’s the point here: if your PR and marketing is focused on telling your target audience what makes you great and selling the reasons why they should do business with you, all you will ever get is a transaction at best.

How does your message make them feel?

If you can make your prospects ‘feel’ something when they engage with you, then you’ll get a whole lot more – brand loyalty.

That something could be feeling empowered (Nike – Just Do It), the feeling that you’re living your values as a conscious consumer (Patagonia – We’re In The Business To Save Our Home Planet), or simply the feeling of being part of a community with a shared goal (Liverpool FC – You’ll Never Walk Alone… hey, I’m from Liverpool!).

Ed Davey absolutely nailed this. It was genuine, personal, authentic, and filled with humility.

There was no electioneering and no point scoring against his political opponents. As such, it enamoured Davey to the public – and the media, too.

I replied to Sam Coates’s Tweet to echo the above, and the number of people seeing it has, at time of writing some 24 hours later, peaked at just over 11,000.

This is not a brag, it’s a reminder of how to get your voice heard above the noise: say something that introduces a new perspective on a commonly discussed topic.

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If you have three minutes available, watch this for more insights on how being original in your thinking can boost your personal brand as a ‘true’ thought leader:

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