No matter in what industry you are, there is always a narrative being created at some point, it is part of our lives. The Sigmund Freud’s structural model of the psyche describes three theoretical agents that defines the activity and interaction of our mental life: id, ego and superego. Roughly speaking, the id reflects your animal side, your instincts; the superego plays the critical and moralizing role, while the ego makes a realistic mediation between these parts.
Basically, the ego is the one who defines how you portrait yourself to the society, in other words: the one who defines your personal narrative. In the creative industry is no different. But we also have two other types of narrative.
As a section of the personal narrative, the professional narrative defines how you present yourself in your professional network, your job interactions and expertise.
The professional narrative must be well planned and executed, but it is not a matter of faking until you make it. Understand where you are right now at your career, be honest to yourself about your strengths, weakness and goals, so that you can you can fine tune your narrative and apply it to your career. Are you a producer and mixing engineer? A game developer that also writes? A film director that edits?
Find your most valuable strength and focus on it. If it’s hard for someone to be the best at one single thing, imagine on multiple ones. When you present yourself as a multifunctional professional you are instantly throwing away idea that you may be the best at one of the subjects, whereas if you market yourself as a mixing engineer, for instance, you are advertising that you may be really good at it and subconsciously selling the idea that you could do an at least decent job on the relative subjects around it, such as editing, recording or mastering. Although, this type of narrative is mainly about selling your image to your working peers, but they are definitely not your audience and neither should be perceived as so. Then how would you sell your products, your art, to the majority that consumes it?
Marketing narrative is the way your content will be presented to a determined niche. Although you are selling the same thing, one single content shall have different narratives for each targeted public. It is a matter of acknowledging what your art is or is not made of, and emphasizing certain characteristics to match each audience’s expectations.
Just like in the professional narrative, honesty is paramount when it comes to developing a marketing narrative so that no false expectations are built upon it, thus, getting rid of the risk of any major negative backlash against the product and the professional narrative of the creative practitioners behind it, like happened in the game No Man’s Sky.
In the end of the day, that’s what a great marketing narrative is all about: developing an image that makes your product extremely desirable and unique, while maintaining the honesty about what it is all about. In other words, saying what they want, and giving what they want.