“What unites people? Armies? Gold? Flags? [No.] Stories. There’s nothing in the world more powerful than a good story. Nothing can stop it. No enemy can defeat it.”
I’ve watched a sum total of 3.25 episodes of “Game of Thrones.” So, while Tyrion Lannister gave this rationale for who should rule the Iron Throne, I was not wallowing in story arc, blood lines or my betting pool.
Instead I was struck by the universal truth of it. Brands live and die by uniting people with their story.
As Fortune’s Alan Murray wrote today “Anyone who has ever had the honor of working with an iconic brand … knows two truths: 1) iconic brands are powerful business tools, and 2) they are surprisingly resilient, and once built, are difficult to destroy.”
Two Fortune stories out today dissect once iconic (and difficult to destroy), Sears. Anyone cognizant in the 60’s has a personal Sears story because “in 1969, two-thirds of Americans shopped at Sears in any given quarter.” It’s hard to explain why else it is has survived for 70 years, given the strategic blunders they detail.
If you’re considering your corporate brand and reputation, pat down your pockets for story. Are you honoring the tale of the company’s roots? The narrative of its purpose? The stories perennially told by employees?
I’m with Tyrion that you should.