How to use Storytelling to Build a Strong, Memorable Brand: A Case Study of PiggyVest

Written by Toyosi Adebusuyi

The story you tell as a brand is far more than an afterthought—it is the heart and soul of your brand identity. Your narrative goes beyond selling a product, to reveal your purpose, connect with your audience, and inspire them to see the world, a problem or a solution through your eyes.

Your narrative is the window into the soul of your brand

An effective brand story does not happen by chance; it is intentionally designed to build a connection between you and those you serve. By opening up and sharing your authentic experiences and opinions, you welcome others into your vision in a way that resonates deeply with them.

This connection becomes a compass that guides the ongoing growth of your brand or product. An inspiring story is a catalyst that transforms strangers into loyal brand advocates who become invested in bringing your vision to life. Treat your story as the priceless asset it is. Your narrative is the window into the soul of your brand—make it count.

Take ownership of your narrative

When done right, your story has the power to turn strangers into loyal advocates who are invested in bringing your mission to life. More importantly, if you do not take control of your narrative, the media and other external factors can shape it for you, potentially diluting your brand identity and impact. Media narratives and external standpoints can imprint a story onto your brand that misses the essence of why you started your company. This undermines the unique value and perspective you bring to the world.

When you connect your origin story with the pain points of your audience, you spark genuine empathy while inspiring action. An intentional narrative is your chance to imprint your purpose onto the world. Don't leave that power in the hands of others. Tell your story and align the perceptions of your stakeholders with your brand's mission.

Tell stories that address the problem you are solving

As an entrepreneur or business, you must see past the novelty of your product and solution, and address the real problems your users face. Don't shy away from acknowledging the harsh realities behind these problems, even if they are complex. Your willingness to tackle difficult subjects demonstrates empathy and compassion for your customers as multi-dimensional people. This sets you apart from competitors who only focus on selling the next best product or innovation.

When your brand aligns with meeting customers where they are - your users will remember the brand that saw their full humanity and built a relationship rooted in trust and understanding. Lean into the messy problem-solving and show your customers they are not alone. That's how you craft a narrative that leaves a lasting impression.

How storytelling has helped PiggyVest create a memorable brand

Nigerian fintech startup PiggyVest exemplifies the immense power of identifying with your audience's pain points through storytelling. The founders of PiggyVest were motivated to build the product when a Twitter user posted a photo of her savings box and explained how she was able to save 365,000 Naira by setting aside 1,000 Naira daily in a traditional savings box (KOLO).

That tweet resonated with the founders, who saw this as an opportunity to digitise savings for young Nigerians who wanted to follow the same model to save money. By centring its brand story around this initial user experience, PiggyVest forged an emotional bond with its community. They showed users "We see you, we understand your goals, and we want to help you achieve them." This narrative propelled their exponential growth from 1,000 to nearly 5 million users.

However, it wasn't just their innovative product that led to this growth; storytelling played a major role. They tapped into young Nigerians’ aspirations by portraying saving as social, cool, and achievable, completely avoiding complex financial jargon and boring financial management lectures. What they did instead, was focus on creating relatable, fun and easily digestible content. PiggyVest met their audience where they were through storytelling.

One of their content strategies is the Saver of the Month series which spotlights inspirational role models, leveraging user-generated content to make saving money aspirational. By highlighting top app savers, PiggyVest leverages people's desires to showcase their successes and be recognized. Additionally, vulnerable storytelling through their series tagged “My Money Mistake” has helped to build trust in users by addressing financial struggles people face in a real, down-to-earth way. “Six Figure” is another series which shares real-time experiences on how people have achieved massive income growth, making them millionaires.

PiggyVest continues to break new ground in strategic storytelling with the launch of their animated series, Grown Up. This innovative comic expands upon its brand storytelling as it documents the post-graduation journeys of four young Nigerians. Grown Up builds upon PiggyVest's core message of empowering Nigerians to take control of their financial futures. The characters mirror PiggyVest's target users and model how to overcome real-world money challenges with the right tools and community.

Through these strategic storytelling efforts, PiggyVest has built a reputation as a mission-driven startup that genuinely empowers financial success. By sharing relatable money stories and lessons, they've inspired and impacted many lives. Their brand narrative conveys their purpose - helping Nigerians take control through simplified savings and investment.

Helping founders and startups understand and identify the pivotal themes and narratives that can help them establish their personal and startup brand identities, as well as creating storytelling narratives that truly resonate with their ideal audience is our passion at Reneé.

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