“Good stories show who we are. Storytelling helps us come into our own when our customers and partners talk about the passion and dedication they see in our employees,” says Jan Crone Foster, construction designer and partner at MMAKE Engineers and Construction Designers in Herlev, Denmark.
MMAKE specialises in providing technical construction advice to administrators and company boards on renovating cooperative, non-profit and owners’ housing associations in Greater Copenhagen and the surrounding area.
MMAKE’s core services are providing construction consultancy for large and medium-sized renovation projects involving urban regeneration, energy optimisation, climate protection and maintenance plans. MMAKE also strives to communicate at eye level with all its customers, regardless of their degree of technical knowledge and construction experience.
At Grønbech PR and Communication, we provide marketing to MMAKE in the form of storytelling on websites, social media and trade magazine portals. We write and publish stories that give MMAKE’s customers and partners a voice and allow them to describe their experiences of their projects and partnerships.
Storytelling raises awareness and trust
“In the past, we spent a lot of resources on advertising to raise our profile and gain access to new partners, customers and projects. But we can see that it’s much more effective when we develop stories that our customers and partners help to tell and share on social media,” explains Jan Crone Foster.
“We only get new projects from partners, administrators and boards who trust us. When they read our stories and see how others praise our advice and project management, it creates both awareness and trust. It’s a great way to market ourselves, and it also gives us a sense of pride and humility,” he adds.
Storytelling strengthens relationships
For some business owners, it may be a barrier to let go of control and let others talk to customers and articulate what the business is good at. But for Jan Crone Foster, leaving the writing to professionals has been a good experience:
“We live in a country with tall poppy syndrome, so it’s great if people from outside the company can put into words what it is we’re good at. They can do it without blushing! And sometimes it’s a positive surprise to hear what our customers have to say about their experiences with us,” he says.
Jan Crone Foster has also found that it creates a closer bond and provides more new contacts with customers and partners when you include them in the storytelling as sources and ask them to approve the stories at the proofreading stage:
“In several cases, I’ve come closer to our customers or in contact with new people at our partners. My experience is that they read and acknowledge our stories when they’re being proofread. This makes them notice us, and they are also willing to share and like our good stories.”
Storytelling contributes to SEO
In addition to increasing awareness, creating trust and strengthening relationships with customers and partners, online storytelling also helps MMAKE appear in potential customers’ search results, for example when someone is looking for construction designers or help with their maintenance plan.
“You can spend a lot money on Google Ads, and it can be hard to measure the effect, because we sell a specialised and complex service which requires that we meet and talk to customers. As Google begins to notice our stories online, we also become more visible in searches on the most important keywords and competencies,” says Jan Crone Foster.
Good help with realising the storytelling
Another benefit of the collaboration with Grønbech’s team that Jan Crone Foster points out is our curiosity and project management:
“I’m happy with our collaboration and appreciate your genuine and friendly interest in MMAKE’s business. You’re good at capturing what it’s about, and good at angling the stories. In addition, it’s a big advantage for us that you stick to the agreed plans and follow up,” says Jan Crone Foster and elaborates:
“With your help, we’re free to focus on our daily work, projects and customers. Even when we’re focused on something else, our storytelling and marketing gets done. It’s important that we market ourselves. Also during periods when we’re really busy.”