If your business has been following Donald Miller’s StoryBrand marketing framework, you’ve likely heard of and been intrigued by the idea of a one-liner. This might seem like a small component, but it’s one of the most valuable weapons in your marketing arsenal. In this article we’ll help you put it to work for your business. We’ll answer your biggest questions—What is a one-liner? and What are the elements of an effective one-liner?—plus, we’ll share 5 StoryBrand one-liner examples you can use as you craft your own.
What Is a One-Liner?
In StoryBrand, every business fills out a BrandScript. This is an in-depth look at who your brand is, what problems you solve and how you guide clients to success. The one-liner is the abridged version of your BrandScript—your elevator pitch. It concisely answers the question: “What do you do?”
One-liners are meant to encompass three aspects of your brand messaging: the client’s problem, the solution you offer and what success looks like. I know what you’re thinking: “Rob, that’s a lot of information to fit into one sentence.” And you’re right! Despite the name, your StoryBrand one-liner isn’t restricted to a single sentence. In fact, most one-liners are three or four sentences, each one targeting a different part of the message.
It might seem like a lot of extra effort just to parse down a BrandScript, but your one-liner is incredibly beneficial for your brand. It gives a quick explanation of who you are and what you do so you don’t lose interest from potential clients. It also creates team clarity by giving all of your employees a great answer when someone asks about the business. But most of all, it forces you to create a meaningful statement that concisely describes your brand and piques the interest of your ideal clients.
Crafting the perfect one-liner can take some work, so let’s look at the three elements of an effective one-liner that can be integrated into your marketing strategy.
Elements of an Effective One-Liner
While BrandScripts take a deep dive into your business and aim to iron out every detail, one-liners are more concerned with the main points. Those are the problem, the solution, and the picture of success.
The first step is to describe and empathize with a pain point in your client’s life. This establishes an internal or external problem they’re facing and opens a story loop in their brain. For example, maybe they’ve needed to replace a tire on their car for months but never have time to take it to a mechanic. You can paint the picture of a hard-working individual (your client, the hero) who’s keeping their focus on providing for their family, which leaves little time to deal with the family car.
How will the hero overcome this obstacle?
Next, you’ll offer a solution. And it just so happens that your brand has the perfect fix! This section of your one-liner is where you provide a clear, concise explanation of your services. You offer remote tire change services, so your clients don’t have to take time off or travel across town. You’ll come to their place of work, change the tire and email them the bill. Easy peasy!
This part will all sound well and good, but humans are visual learners. So now you want to paint the picture of your solution to show how great it is.
This is where you should illustrate the end result. You want to show clients what success looks and feels like with your brand. The solution tells them how easy it will be to work with you and how great their life will be with your services. The picture of success goes one step further.
You might say, “With four great tires, you won’t worry about your car keeping up with you.” This shows your clients that not only is your service a simple solution to their problem, but it also will improve their quality of life. They can go about their daily routine with the peace of mind that their car is in good condition.
Now that we know what we’re aiming for in a one-liner, let’s take a look at a few examples of these elements in practice.
StoryBrand One-Liner Examples
Here are a few sample StoryBrand one-liner examples for service-based industries. Notice how we follow the simple steps above to create engaging, effective explanations of what the brand does so it can stand out from its competitors.
1.) Event Rental Company:
- Hosting the perfect event that pleases everyone on your guest list is no easy task. At EZ Rentals, we provide affordable rentals for every occasion, every budget, and every style. We’ll take care of the set-up and tear-down so you can enjoy the party. Give us a call today and make your next event a crowd-pleaser.
2.) Financial Planning
- You’re busy enough with your day-to-day schedule without worrying about your financial future. When you partner with Fuller Financial, you have a team of professionals in your corner who will give you expert insight into your finances. Schedule a call today and get peace of mind about your future.
3.) Lawncare Company
- Taking care of your lawn year-round can feel like one more time-sucking chore. With GroSure Lawncare Services, you’ll never have to worry about your lawn again. Let us keep it green in the summer and protected in the winter—all while you spend time doing the things you love.
4.) Grocery Delivery
- With everything going on in your life, running to get groceries might be the last thing on your mind. Let HopShopper take care of your grocery run, with a guaranteed 1-hour delivery time and the lowest rates of any other service. We’ll take care of the groceries—you take care of what matters most.
5.) Home Remodeling
- Home remodeling doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg. At MiCasa Home Remodeling, we want your home to feel like home—and we’ll help you make that happen on your budget. Contact us today to create the home you’ll enjoy for a price you’ll love.
What to Do With Your One-Liner
After you’ve used these StoryBrand one-liner examples to craft your own, it’s time to put it into practice! Use your one-liner throughout your marketing to give prospects a clear understanding of your brand:
- Add it to your email signature so every communication reinforces your brand goals and standards.
- Make it your bio text on social media so people learning about your brand have a clear idea of how you can help them.
- Add it as a tagline on your business cards so new clients know what to expect as they begin their journey with you.
- Teach it to your employees so they always have a great answer when someone asks, “What does your company do?”
Your one-liner is a BrandScript made simple, and it’s easy to utilize almost anywhere. Whether you’re a small business looking for marketing tips or a large company trying to improve marketing results, positioning yourself as a StoryBrand guide in your one-liner is a powerful way to capture new business and foster growth.
To get started crafting your StoryBrand one-liner, download our free worksheet!
As a StoryBrand Certified Agency, we at Hughes Integrated pride ourselves on creating great messaging that really works. Contact us today to see how we can help you develop a one-liner that resonates with clients.