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Why you need stories in employer branding right now

Reading Time: 6 minutes

At Stories Inc, we are often asked why we focus so intently on stories in employer branding. Uncovering compelling employee stories and bringing those stories to life in engaging content may seem to be a narrow concentration of expertise. However, the impact of stories in employer branding and recruitment marketing reveals why stories are our vocation and passion. 

Why stories?

Our brains release dopamine (the natural happy drug) when we connect with a compelling or emotionally charged story,. That dopamine release makes it more likely that we’ll remember the story afterwards. In fact, it’s been proven that humans remember facts better when they’re a part of a story 22 times more than the facts alone. Plus, research has shown that stories are effective ways of influencing others, making them critical aspects of employer brand and recruitment marketing content. 

Why written storytelling over informational text? When read, stories are consumed more quickly, yet remembered more easily, than purely informational texts. This combination is key, as our audiences’ attentions and memory space are valuable assets. Also, textual stories create an immediate connection with the reader. Informational texts don’t do that. 

For instance, many company career sites include text that says something like, “We are committed to hiring veterans and supporting veteran employees.” However, when contrasted with the story of how Malina is thriving in Project Management after 12 years of military service, it’s easy to see which medium is most effective. Stories transform information from forgettable statements to wisdom and insight. 

Why visual storytelling? 

Visual stories are extremely effective. In fact, 90 percent of information that is transmitted to our brains is visual. Visual stories evoke an immediate emotional response and bond between viewer and content. When we watch a video, our reactions mirror the emotions portrayed on the screen. That’s powerful communication. 

Photography and video content also help viewers remember the messages. It’s estimated that video viewers retain 95 percent of a message when they see it in a video.

Why do stories communicate talent brand and employee experience so effectively? 

Stories of what it’s like to work at a company are sought out and eagerly consumed by candidates. 30 percent of job seekers say they find it difficult to receive honest information about the day-to-day experience at a company or role. Largely, this is because candidates are not provided with pictures or videos of the company or the employee experience. 

Team members need authentic content, too. One survey revealed that only 19 percent of employees feel their experience at work matches their organization’s employer brand. Stock photos and videos, or outdated employer brand content, do not serve employee engagement. 

Can you capture stories when your employees are distributed or working remotely? 

Technology today allows organizations to gather stories from employees working from home offices and distributed locations. This way you can really reflect your current culture and virtually-connected teams. 

At Stories Inc., we are dedicated to uncovering companies’ right-now cultures. And we are also passionate about sharing stories of the high visual quality and compelling content. That’s why we provide services specifically to support distributed teams. Notably, we launched Virtual Story Sessions, a service that translates our story-based approach and results to the remote employee experience. 

Our Virtual Story Sessions are facilitated experiences that make capturing stories easy for our clients and their employee storytellers. The visual stories that we capture and produce in high definition video and audio provide the insight into culture that resonates with employees and candidates. 

Why are stories from remote team members leading-edge content? 

Providing your audiences with what it really looks like to work at your company right now is powerful content. If you show candidates the distributed team member experience, you set your employer brand apart from the rest; most organizations are not providing those visuals or information to job seekers. And, it’s important to show employees the experiences of their colleagues across an organization to increase their connection to the culture. 

Additionally, capturing stories remotely allows you to showcase more diversity at your organization. By removing geographic barriers, you can capture stories from team members all around your organization, no matter where work is happening. This content shows your organization’s commitment to diversity, inclusion and belonging, proven by your employee storytellers. 

Want a worksheet for planning stories content for distributed teams? 

Our Content Planning Worksheet for Distributed Teams is your guide to planning effective stories content, no matter where work is happening. You’ll find topic suggestions for your employee story content that are important for both talent brand and employee engagement. And, the worksheet provides you with checklists of the different content types necessary for connecting with your audiences.

Get planning — download the worksheet!