Folklore Storytelling: When Your Consumers Are Creating Your Brand Story

15 Jul 2013
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Michael Wintrob

Last week, we talked about how brands celebrate their origins and unique qualities through heritage storytelling. Today we explore folklore, another form of powerful storytelling that begins outside of the brand, originating from the consumer base.

Folklore is often understood as word-of-mouth storytelling, but it can also include customs and popular beliefs associated with a brand; it is any practice that is consumer-driven, created and spread.

Using ideas promoted by the brand but owned by consumers makes folklore stories among the stickiest forms in today’s social environment. While brands can’t dictate the entire story, they still must be diligent in seeding new discussions the community can embrace and build upon.

For example, our client Lansinoh, a longtime favorite among the inner circles of nursing moms, has benefitted from folklore storytelling since their products hit shelves: Moms tell other moms about their experience with the brand, and neonatal nurses recommend Lansinoh’s line of products to new moms during their hospital stays.

In today’s digital age, the brand has successfully established a connection with the tech-savvy, Generation-Y cohort of new mothers. Lansinoh’s Twitter and Facebook feeds feature advice from the experts and resources for new moms—but as importantly, the brand provides the structure for moms to share their personal breast-feeding experiences.


Whether it’s discussing important questions such as How do you bond with your little one?,” featuring a mom’s very personal blog post about her breast-feeding struggles or simply debunking myths—Lansinoh is more than a social brand.  They are attentive listeners committed to amplifying their narrative through organic consumer stories.

Click here to learn more about Lansinoh’s story.

Share your story. Email Senior Strategy Director Michael Wintrob  or find him on Twitter at @mwintrob.