What Story Do You Tell? Marketing Messages That Work


A lot of small business owners and startup founders delegate marketing because they lack the knowledge, interest or a bit of both. But as an owner or founder, it’s important to know enough to ensure your marketing dollars aren’t being wasted. So, with that in mind, let’s tackle one key aspect of your marketing strategy: your message.


Your marketing message is not the copy you’ll place in ads, but a statement that captures the story of what your business does best and how you’re positioned in the marketplace relative to competitors. This statement is used internally to help your team understand your story and why your business is so amazing. This internal statement is the common thread that runs through all customer communications and forms the backbone of all your marketing and social media campaigns. By ensuring each communication sent out into the world supports your marketing message, you can ensure customers will receive a clear, consistent story, no matter how they encounter your brand. To get started, consider these questions:


Along with capturing the story of why your business exists and what it does best, your marketing message helps people understand how you’re different from competitors. To ensure you’re offering something different or better than competitors, you need to know what they’re doing. Understanding your position relative to competitors can help you identify new opportunities and features that are important to your ideal customer. Once you’re identified exactly how you’re different and better, it’s far easier to create a persuasive marketing message that resonates with customers and gets the point across. Not sure about positioning your business? Use this quick and easy graphing technique to get started. Do you want your business to be known as the low price option or as a premium brand? Is your company rooted in tradition or cutting edge? Here are just a few examples of attributes that can help you decide how you can position your business relative to competitors:

  • Price
  • Convenience
  • Tradition
  • Quality
  • Green or eco-friendly
  • Healthy
  • Organic or locally sourced
  • Luxury or premium
  • Safety
  • Customer service
  • Design



Let’s use a prepared food delivery business, “Healthy Meals on Wheels”, as an example. By answering a few additional questions we can get a better idea of what marketing message makes sense for this business and its customers.

What does the business do best?

The business takes pride in being able to make healthy meals using local and organic ingredients and loves the fact that it can deliver meals straight to customers. These are the things it does best, the things the founders feel passionate about, and what the company believes in.

What problem does the business solve? People don’t have the time or ability to make healthy meals.

Who has the problem? People who are too busy to cook or can’t cook healthy food.

How are the company’s meals different and better than competitors’?

Most competitors do not specialize in healthy meals. By using this graphing technique, the founders also discovered that even fewer competitors are focusing on local and organic ingredients, features that they’ve confirmed customers want and are willing to pay for.


These are the key points to incorporate into your marketing message:

  • Healthy
  • Organic and local
  • Convenient

Now we need to turn the above points into a statement that means something to these customer groups:

  • Busy people who want to eat healthy
  • People who can’t cook, but want to eat healthy


“Healthy Meals on Wheels makes eating organic, local and healthy food easy and convenient”. All marketing and social media campaigns should support this marketing message. The company could tell customers about the benefits of eating its organic food, create promotions around food-related holidays, share how it supports the local food movement, or provide great content that shows people how to eat healthy, for example.


With a clear marketing message, you now have a point of reference for all of your communications, making it easy for people to understand how you’re different and better than competitors, and bringing you one step closer to a solid marketing strategy.

Does your business have an awesome marketing message? Tell us about it in the comments! 

Image by crafty_dame

Article written By: Carolyn Crewe | Originally Published on www.businessforbeginners.ca

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