Experiential Storytelling at Events and Sponsorships – Collin Hummel, 3M – Episode 75

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Collin Hummel, 3M’s Senior Manager, Global Strategy Group unpacks 3 recent clever experiential brand storytelling examples. Turning a pro football stadium purple, 3M Open comeback after COVID, and Women’s Final Four remembrance of 50 years since Title IX.

THIS EPISODE AT-A-GLANCE

  • The visual and experiential manifestation of a 120-year old brand
  • Activations woven into a brand’s story experience
  • Collin’s piece of advice for Sarah’s listeners

Links mentioned in EPISODE

Full Podcast Transcription

Collin Hummel:
I don’t start with the product. I start with the property, I start with the audience. And really it’s like the human insight. What insight are we connecting to? How do I wanna connect with this audience and create value for them? If you’re at the Vikings, how do I get people to say “Okay, 3M is here at the Vikings game”. What does that make sense? As opposed to, “Hi come over to the 3M booth, I’m gonna give you Post-It notes”. It’s more so connecting with people on a human level.

Sarah Panus:
Hi, my name is Sarah Panus. I have spent the last two decades driving digital content for billion dollar brands. Now I help content marketers build winning brand storytelling strategies and reduce feelings of overwhelm and confusion. Join me as we discuss strategy, creativity, confidence, and building a better connection with your audience. Think of this as a creative content marketing jam session mixed with chicken soup for the soul. This is the Marketing With Empathy podcast. 

Sarah Panus:
Hey, Hey, Kindred Speakers. One of the things I love about the power of brand storytelling is that stories can be woven into so many different channels and moments throughout your entire funnel. So today, I invited Collin Hummel from 3M on to talk more about the great storytelling work that he’s doing at 3M in person and digital events and sponsorships. From my perspective, Collin and his team are nailing it.

Sarah Panus:
They’ve creatively are finding ways to make sciencey products engaging on a mainstream level and making a 120 year old global conglomerate that 3M is relevant and contemporary. Collin Hummel is the senior manager of global strategy group at 3M. He’s currently responsible for the visual and experiential manifestation of 3M’s corporate brand serving as senior manager for 3M’s global strategy group, where he oversees the brand activation and storytelling approach for 3M, sponsorships, and events, including the 3M open Minnesota Vikings CES women’s final four and more. And we’re gonna get into like unpacking some of those events for us too. So you can hear what goes into like the creation of those, the work that Collin leads is all rooted in engaging audiences on the importance of science and its impact on life. We’ll hear more about Collin’s 3M storytelling experiences after a word from our sponsors. Collin, welcome to the show.

Collin Hummel:
Hello Sarah, how are you?

Sarah Panus:
Hi, I’m doing great. Thank you. Super excited for this conversation. I know I said teased it in the beginning, but like, I really do think like your team is like nailing it every time I see something pop up from you on LinkedIn about, you know, a new campaign or a new event, new sponsor, new something. I always like, I’m always liking it. Probably like loving it, giving it the heart, cuz it is. It’s just so smart. And that’s why I wanted to invite you to come on so that we could hear more about what you are doing at 3M. Because from my perspective, you know, you’re doing a great job of thinking about your products, but you’re not like talking about the products, you’re sharing it through a story experience. It’s it’s sensory, it’s entertaining, it’s educational. And I was thinking about it and I was like, you know, if I was like gonna give like 3M and the work you’re doing like a personal per, per persona, which I do like with storytelling sometimes I’ll think of like, what’s the persona of this. I’d say you guys are like the cool science teacher. Is that like the vibe you’re going for? Or is that just my interpretation of it?

Collin Hummel:
I’ve never thought about the vibe we’re going for, but I think it’s a good question. And I think on some level you’re probably the moniker you’ve chosen is probably right. But ultimately for us, for me, it’s really less about teaching per se and more about storytelling, especially storytelling on a very human level. Like my job, isn’t educating anybody on how science works. Like I’ll leave that to the scientists who do that. Like, I don’t get into the science of the non-woven makeup of this filter helps trap. I don’t have to do that look, but thank God. Right? Yeah, but my job is really to lean into the why. Why does it matter that this product exists in my life? I go to this a lot when I talk to people about 3M and I kind of say, it’s think about the things in your life that you might think of mundane.

Collin Hummel:
And I’ll give you a couple examples, like a road sign, something you see every day. I’m not gonna have to teach people in, in any of my experiences around the micro replicated charismatic structure allows light to reflect back at, you know, I talk about, think of yourself, driving home in a really stormy night. You know, you just wanna get home back to the care of your loved ones and you see this road sign and, and because the light does hit back at it and come hit you that face, you see it and you see the exit for your house. And now you’re close to home. And I wanna talk about that feeling of, of that, like what that sign stands for in terms of getting you home much the same as like a post-it note is not about the note itself. It’s like what the post-it note helps create and its ideas. And, and when people have song ideas and inspiration ideas, they use it. So I don’t get into that sort of science. I get into the why it matters. It’s a long way of me saying you’re you’re right. But it’s not necessarily that my directive, if that makes sense.

Sarah Panus:
Yeah, no, absolutely makes sense. Okay. Well, okay. So tell us more then about what goes into thinking about this, the visual and experiential manifestation of a 120 year old brand, cuz 3M is really in, I think it’s involved in everything. I mean really I think if you’ve got all the products and things that you make, it’s literally like our homes, our work environment, like everywhere, there’s so many different things that you do. So how do you think about that visual and experiential manifestation?

The visual and experiential manifestation of a 120 Year old brand

Collin Hummel:
Yeah. I think you pointed out well, it’s, it’s both a blessing and a curse that I have 55,000 products to play with. Right, right. I, I imagine working in a company where you’re selling one or two things, you can just continue to lean into that. I have the benefit of, of going all over the place and to your point, that could be in somebody’s home life. That could be in somebody’s work life in their commute and the plane and the healthcare. And oh my gosh, you start to get overwhelmed by it. But also it allows you to do some pretty amazing things. So when we think about manifesting our brand, it really started for us at the central core of 3M back in 2015. And that’s when we officially launched the 3M science applied to life platform up until then a lot of the sort of quote unquote marketing was done in the, in the business groups, the divisions, right?

Collin Hummel:
It was really B2B. They were selling products and we have very quality products. That’s gonna help you do this. But this is the first time we really, as a, as a holistic group started telling like, who is 3M? Why do we matter? And that’s leaning into that applied to life portion of that brand platform. And so what we really had to start doing was reintroducing ourselves to the world. I always, I always joke about this, especially with people from Minnesota, it’s like, everybody has an uncle that works here, like, oh my uncles work there. Or they say, do you know? So and so well there’s 94,000 people here. I probably don’t. But most cases you actually doing it. But people had like this legacy understanding of who we are. And usually it was based off of products. It’s like, oh yeah, you’re the scotch tape people.

Collin Hummel:
Oh, you’re the post-it people. Or you guys had those great filter filters. Like that’s how most people knew us or it was, they know us in their work like, oh, I work in healthcare and I buy a lot of your Litman or I bought a lot of your tag Ader stuff that already happened. So we had to reintroduce ourselves to people and sort of broaden their understanding, not only the breadth of our offerings, but why it matters. So really it was all about the supply to life thing, this, the supply to life sort of ethos like, oh, you matter in my life because you help me do this. You help me stay protected. You help me stay safe. You help me get stuff done. So as I look about like, what I do, and this is, you know, as we think about a marketing ecosystem, you know, you have print.com, billboards, TV, etc.

Collin Hummel:
I get to play at all those like events and sponsorships inherently have all of these touch points in this, in the physical world, at least. And, and so I get to go off and, and tell people about this, this application of science into your life, across the spectrum of, of creative assets. And it’s been really fun doing it in the physical space because I get to engage people authentically one to one, like push pull, grab. So people are engaging in science and learning why it matters to them. So that really started back in 2015 and now has an, now we’re seven years into that that, that platform launch.

Sarah Panus:
Wow. Okay. So how do you decide then? Which stories you have 55,000 products. Like how do you decide, like which stories you’d like to tell connected to your events and your sponsorships?

Collin Hummel:
Yeah, it’s a good question. And the, the cool thing I think I’m not charged with. I think I mentioned this earlier, I’m not charged with selling product. I’m not given a list of priority products saying here’s the top thing, top 10 things. I want you to push this year. Like, again, I’m here to tell you about 3M at like, who is the company? Like what, what is at the heart of it? So I don’t start with the product. I start with the property, I start with the audience and really it’s like the human insight. Like, what insight are we connecting to? How do I wanna connect with this audience and create value for them? So if you’re at the Vikings, like how do I get people to say, okay, 3M is here at the Vikings game. Why does that make sense? As opposed to hi, come over to the 3M booth. I’m gonna give you post-it notes. It’s more so like connecting with people on a human level, as opposed to various sort of product centric. So you lean on, on why it matters. And then the product kind of helps as the way in.

Sarah Panus:
Oh, what a fun job. Side note, how amazing. Right? I feel like every, all the content pros listening right now are like, oh, how amazing. It’s pretty rare to not be told these are the priority things that we have to push. So I love that you have that flexibility to think about what are the best stories to communicate who 3M is.

Collin Hummel:
Well, and I do want to be clear. Like we do bring value to our business groups and our divisions, cuz we do ultimately talk about products. It just isn’t the way in now they can piggyback us. Like, let’s say I’m talking to a very B2C audience I’m talking to your general consumer. Maybe it’s somebody in the 18 to 34 range about 3M. The business group can also sort of piggyback that content or experience I create to talk to their audience. Right. So it serves both masters, my charge just isn’t their charge, which is very sort of selling the product where mine is just telling about who we are.

Sarah Panus:
Yeah. But isn’t that, what’s so great about storytelling is that like, I always think of it, that it’s a great example of it’s a conversation with someone like you’re doing the welcoming. The handshake, getting them warmed up, getting them interested and then the sales team can come in and ask them on the first date. So I love how that all works together, for companies and you need, you need that. That’s why I think storytelling is so powerful and it’s so incredibly valuable for brands.

Collin Hummel:
Well, and even as. I was just gonna add, I think that’s a really good point. Even as we’re educating in house, I mean some people, these people in the businesses are very sort of keyed in on product selling. So like what, what’s the value of you talking at such a high level and not getting into the product specifics. I’m talking to people pre funnel if we think about a sales journey, right. I’m talking about people pre funnel who might not be customers now, but they might be customers in 15 years. And so I’m laying this groundwork of like, wow, you’ve built trust and awareness and familiarity and favorability. So down the funnel, when now to your point, the sales consultant engages and they’re like, oh yeah, I know you because I saw you do this one thing. Or I noticed the impact you had here. So we play together, but I’m just much earlier in that selling process.

Sarah Panus:
Great. Okay. Well, let’s talk about then some the activations and, and things that you’ve done recently, cuz it’s just been a lot of really great stuff. And you and I talked beforehand and we there’s three of them. I wanna talk a book that are each different and I think we’ll give really great inspiration and ideas to my listeners of other things that are how you can use storytelling in these ways. So I would love to kind of unpack the story first around your partnership with the Minnesota Vikings. And when you turned the stadium purple. Tell us more about that.

Activations woven into A Brand’s story EXPERIENCE

Collin Hummel:
I like when you say turn the stadium purple that’s that’s awesome. That’s what we were hoping to do. It all began in a dark and stormy night. No, it began with our partnership, with the Vikings as the official science partner. Now what does that mean? Like what are, what value are we bringing the Vikings? Well, we help build US Bank stadium. There’s only over 50 products that were used to make the stadium. We help players from a healthcare perspective, right? With our reps and our other solutions. From a healthcare perspective, my job is really engaging the fans. Like what does it mean for a fan to have a science partner at Minnesota Vikings games? And for me it’s all about experience. So to your question before about like what, what story do you lean into? Like if this were a, a product story, I would have a kiosk in the, in the concourse and I was giving away products.

Collin Hummel:
But what I wanna do is create value by enhancing their experience at that game. So the fan leaves the game saying, Hey, I had a good time assuming that the Vikings won and 3M helped play a part in that. So the product with turning the stadium purple is, is, is a film that goes on commercial signs. So if you’re driving down your main boulevard in your city, you see the Burger King sign, this is the film that makes that Burger King sign come to life. Now I am not selling that film to people, the 65,000 fans, right? I’m not going in there saying, Hey, 3M has this print film that makes signage stand out. Nope. I wanted people to have a good time at the game. So if you take a step back, I wasn’t even sure if this was gonna work. So I got strips of this purple print film, and I put it on the flash in my camera.

Collin Hummel:
And I went to one side of our quad on our campus and I had another person go on the other side and I said, I’m gonna turn it on. Tell me if it looks purple and they got on their phone. And they said, looks purple. So we created 65,000 little strips of purple. We put it on this peel-able piece of paper on all the programs. And then we had a program with the Vikings to okay. At, at halftime and at the introductions of players want everybody to turn their flash on and therein lies the we’ll turn the stadium purple. So there was a bit of, I hope this works. I think this is gonna work. If it doesn’t work, this might be the end of my tenure here at 3M. But oh my gosh, when the, the lights went off in the stadium and everybody’s phone went on and what was really cool is everybody did it. Holy crap. The stadium literally turned purple. So it was so cool. It was a leap of faith to a certain extent. I mean, I was, I was confident in the film working, but you just never know. Yeah. But that was one that got us a lot of accolades from press and got us a lot of interest in other teams saying, well, I wanna do that. But that was something that, again, I’m not selling that film. I’m heightening people’s experience.

Sarah Panus:
Yeah. So smart too, because you’re right. Like what the product is actually made to do is not gonna build everyone in that audience. And how the heck would you think about that in a football game? So, so creative and really rooting in your audience and the why I think that’s was so smart and just visually it’s such a cool visual. So that just added to the whole thing and just such a simple thing that people could do. I love it.

Collin Hummel:
Thank you.

Sarah Panus:
I love it. Okay. And then the next one I wanna talk about then is your partnership with a celebrity Josh Duhamel and like his role in like the, your work with the Minnesota Twins and bringing fans back to target field where they play and like that transitioned as well then into like the 3M open return to play, like talk me through like that whole thing, cuz it felt like it was very episodic to me. Like there was a lot of layers to it.

Collin Hummel:
Yeah. Episodic is a really a good way to describe the work we’ve done with them. We’ve been in, we’ve worked with Josh now for a few years, starting with the partnership back at the AT&T golf tournament. He’s just been a really cool endorser of our he’s well, he’s from North Dakota, but he’s really Minnesota. Now he has a cabin up north. He’s a huge fan of all the sports teams here and he’s a big fan of what we do. So there’s some natural byplay there. Like, okay. It makes sense that Josh is, is working with you. When we think of the Twins work I take it a step back to the old school way of thinking about partnerships is I give the Twins money, they put my logo or sign up all over the stadium.

Collin Hummel:
We call it a day. We’ve tried to get away from this. Like just very basic, like just, we wanna put our branding up in your stadium to how can 3M solve a problem for you from an organizational standpoint, right, with the Twins. So the Twins will say, well, we’re trying to bring people back safely. Like the pandemic is waning down a bit. We want people to come back to the game and, and feel secure that the Twins are doing all they can to make your experience here at the game, quote, unquote safe. So now we’re actually having this byplay with the Twins about solving a problem for them and ultimately helping fans come back. So now we can use a breadth of our solutions at the stadium to help fans navigate to stay clean and know to sit and all that stuff.

Collin Hummel:
So it’s rooted in a, in a problem we can solve at 3M. Josh just comes along as our as our narrator in a way he’s the Minnesota who can sort of connect this. Otherwise. It’s what it’s, it’s 3M talking about 3M or the Twins talking about the Twins who cares. Josh becomes sort of, and he does this really well. He’s your sort of, he plays it a little dumb, but he is your sort of your every day man, like, Hey, science is really neat here I am running around the outfield. Like just kinda being Josh.

Sarah Panus:
Yeah, totally. He does a great job. He does a really great job with it.

Collin Hummel:
And I’m telling you behind the scenes, he’s as authentic as he comes across on camera. He’s a wonderful human being and he’s totally engaged in doing this work for us. So you mentioned episodic. So we start with the Twins and we help them bring fans back. We then go to the 3M open and it’s the same narrative. You we’re helping fans come back to target field. We’re helping fans come to our very own three and open. And now I can also have the business group start to say, this is the same science that is helping people return to airports and work in malls in manufacturing. So now you’re starting to see this whole holistic piggybacking, if you will, the B2B side of 3M can now piggyback this work and leverage our content as a way in saying, okay, now I can talk about the products that you use at your airport. So we use our partnerships as these little tenfold moments to tell that consistent narrative.

Sarah Panus:
I’ll put the links to like all of these two in the show notes, guys. So you can watch and see everything that we’re talking about right now. But like unpack it, tell us a little bit more then Collin about what it was like, how did 3M, what was the solution that 3M offered that was allowing fans to return back to the field and these things to be able to re-up for business again? Share a little bit on that piece.

Collin Hummel:
It was a combination of solutions. Some of them were packaged into this program called Clean and Protect. So if you, as a consumer are walking down the main street and you notice on, on a little placard on the front of a door of a restaurant, it says 3M Clean and Protect. You know, that that restaurant is leveraging our sanitization. Is that the word? Our, our sanitizing solutions, cleaning solutions, graphic films for queuing. So people are queuing six feet apart, masks obviously, hand sanitizer. So there are a variety of solutions that help bring fans. Not only bring you back safely, but while you’re there in that environment, we’re helping to keep you six feet apart. We’re helping to keep you clean. We’re helping to keep you safe. So it’s a solution set.

Sarah Panus:
Thank you for expanding on that. Cause I think it’s so interesting, right? There’s all of us have been in meetings at work where you’re like, we have this partner, we have this thing and you’re trying to figure out how you’re going to connect to things that may feel disparate. Like they may feel like there’s no connection, but like, that’s what I love about all the examples we’re going through with you right now, because I think you do such a great job of and hearing you talk about it. It makes sense of like the why and the audience and like, what is the problem you can solve? Yeah. Cause you nor normally like target fields trying to open again and 3M, what, like, you know, just from like a average person perspective, it’s like, wait, wow, that must have been a challenge, but as you would unpack it, it’s so smart.

Sarah Panus:
Right? Like the story and Josh and these videos that I’ll link to in show notes. I think he just like, he made me laugh like, cuz he does, he delivers it brilliantly. Where it’s just like super casual, but like he’s he’s I was like watching it and I’m like, this is bloody brilliant bloody brand storytelling because you’re talking about the product in a storytelling way. That’s like super engaging. And I was like, I never thought I would be like interested in sanitizing product stuff. Right. But just the way he did it and just the playful and the humor and yeah, he was like a guy who was like so excited to get out on the field and like, I don’t know. It was just, it was just so, so well done. So really good job. I just, that one made me laugh. I thought it was so, so well done.

Collin Hummel:
I appreciate that. I think leaning into the comedy side of it certainly helps because it’s natural to Josh. Yeah. If we came at this with a various sort of, I think going back to my earlier comments around like the science behind it, like the molecules and the sanitizing spray, like nobody’s gonna care. Josh becomes the fan who, to your point, he was so excited. Like literally he was so excited to be in that stadium. We could have just kept filming. So him running around the bases, him, him kicking my fat head of my face out of the chair, like that was just Josh like, oh my God, I’m outside again. What was really interesting too about just that time. And it’s still going is, is people’s relationship with science. So you’ll notice in those pieces, Josh does talk science, like he says the word science and he leans in a bit because people started to see the value of it because of what science was helping deliver in the pandemic. Vaccines and what not. So it’s like, okay, people have a bit more confidence in science, so 3M with it, science can help bring you back.

Sarah Panus:
I was so smart. Okay. And then the last example I want you to share more about is the women’s final four and what you did to celebrate like a milestone moment with that. Tell us more there.

Collin Hummel:
Awesome. Yeah, this, this was pretty recent. This was last March and April. As part of our, our sponsorship of the women’s final four, we wanted to lean in on the, the, the 50 year anniversary of title nine. And so there was a bit of like, let’s look back and tell the story of what it was like pre title nine during title nine’s passage immediately after, and then where we are now and going into the future. And so we have this sort of, this, this overriding theme of celebrating 50 years of title. I, but what we wanted to do was a not only see where we, where we’re at with it, but start to celebrate the hopes and dreams of tomorrow’s generation. And so what we did is first, we wanted to capture those stories. So, and this was like an uber labor of love.

Collin Hummel:
It was our small little team of five that did this went out and just canvased the states and went to girls basketball tournaments from all age groups and just had this conversation with these girls about, about a title nine, but then like, what are their dreams? And what was really interesting is I don’t know why I was expecting, but I was expecting maybe that they were very aware of title. I thanks to title nine. I get to do this. Like, but so much time has passed that it’s just a given, it’s just a given now that these girls can go to college and they can play professional sports, they can be any of these things because it’s, it’s been here for so long. And that was really, really cool to see that, of course I have every right to go do what I wanna do in the future.

Collin Hummel:
So we took all of those stories, all of their dreams. And we created this tapestry, a quote, unquote basketball story with it, a basketball court at the mall of America. So we, we built a basketball court made up of thousands of, of young girls dreams. So what this was able to do is, is highlight where, where we’re going, like tomorrow’s leaders and tomorrow’s brilliant little minds, where are they going? Where are they thinking of? And really telling that story. Obviously we were able to, you know, highlight 50 years of title IX and how important it was, but really to celebrate, you know, where these young kids were and where they were going and, and do so in a highly visible way with a variety of 3M solutions that make up like, these are the types of solutions that wrap cars and, and go on window clings and all these types of very visual things.

Collin Hummel:
But I was using it to bring girls dreams to life. And then we paired that with we wanted to lean in on the celebratory sort of idea of when the final four is done and the confetti comes down. So we handmade thousands of post-it note pieces of confetti. So we used fishing line. We took two pieces of PostIt note, slapped them together and threw on and threw out and created this hanging celebration, this sort of quote unquote narrative or this confetti art out of PostIt notes. So, so it’s, again, it’s like mixing dispar products to your point to tell a narrative, to tell a story. So the products, aren’t the way in, it’s the, the sort of canvas that makes sense.

Sarah Panus:
Oh, I love it. I’m like smiling. My, my smile is so huge over here because it’s just so smart, Collin, like everything you guys are doing, I just love it. I love it. I love it. I love brand storytelling. I love the work that you’re doing at 3M to share who 3M is through all of these amazing experiences and really putting the audience first and that who and the why, and, and is huge. So this is just so such great examples for people listening. Yeah, really, really great job. And when you, you said five people did the women’s final four, it was just your team of five.

Collin Hummel:
That’s crazy, a small little nimble group tucked in the basement of a building where we come up with these crazy ideas. So it’s a small group that pours, pours our passion into these. So when we look at what our budget may or may not be, and what we want to get done, it sometimes means that I’m at a home Depot on a Saturday grabbing these elements to bring this to life because it that’s just sometimes what it takes.

Sarah Panus:
Oh yeah. That’s amazing. That’s awesome. Thank you for coming on and sharing those. Of course. So as we wrap up, like, I, I always love to ask for like, kinda like a final piece of advice for my listeners. Like what piece of advice or tip or anything would you, do you have for my listeners around helping them think about how to better connect with their audiences in general?

Collin’s piece of advice for Sarah’s listeners

Collin Hummel:
Hmm. Yeah. Good question. I think it’s an interesting point in time for obvious reasons. We’re all coming out of a pandemic that’s still lingering that is still all around us. We’re still dealing with, with social injustice and all these things. So nobody really knows right now just to be frank. I don’t think anybody knows necessarily how all of us as consumers were affected by the past couple years. I do know that people’s BS, radars are really functioning pretty high. Like nobody has time for BS. Life is finite. I just came out of this really dark time. I don’t have time for stuff that doesn’t matter to me. Right? So if you’re gonna come talk to me, you better make it matter. And pair that with the fact that we’re living through like this industrial revolution for attention, like just, we’re all just being bombarded.

Collin Hummel:
You better make me care. It better be relevant to a where we’re at it better be authentic to who you are and it better matter. So, and this gets really sort of nerdy and I apologize, but like even at a basic level, and like when we’re working on projects, we try to align to like, it’s almost like Maslow’s Pyramid of Needs thinking, right? So if you look at the three examples we gave you like the Vikings that was about belonging, like being part of something bigger than you are, I’m holding my flash up. And I look around and the rest of the stadium is purple with me. And I’m part of something with the Twins. It was all around safety. Like people wanted to come out of their, out of their homes, but they wanted to feel safe. So we could provide a bit of that.

Collin Hummel:
And with the Final Four, like it was this idea of hope. Like we’ve come so far. Life has changed. There’s hope in tomorrow’s today’s youth and what they’ll be able to accomplish tomorrow. So like it all ladders up to what matters on a human level. The rest of it will, will figure out what product is it, what are the sort of logistics and all it, but why does it matter? So my, my sort of view asked what my advice is. You better start with what is the sort of point of this? Why does it matter that people that will engage with it? If you can’t answer that, then you have a problem. The rest of it we just can’t get caught up in corporate jargon and product this and that. Like, make it matter. Sorry, that was a long diatribe.

Sarah Panus:
It’s perfect. Yeah, no. This is the place to be nerdy. We’re all we’re. We are all like this together. You got, you got your community here. I would say like I would. I agree. And that’s what I talk about on the show is like marketing with empathy. And I talk about empathy filters and that connection and that, why does it matter? Like why do they care? So that that’s a beautiful tip. Very well said. And I love how you tied it back to Maslow’s pyramid of needs. That’s you’re the first guest I’ve heard, like specifically say that, but it it’s really smart way to think about that empathy connection with your audience base. Nice. Okay. So I would love to keep talking with you, but we’re gonna be wrapping up. So how can people connect with you online? Like how do they find you?

Collin Hummel:
Well, they can, if they want to connect on a professional level, obviously LinkedIn is where I’m primarily at. If they wanna connect on a personal level, find me on Twitter. @tweetsbycollin is my handle. That is, I won’t be talking work on that channel. That’s just more fun, but if they wanna talk, work and connect, hit me up on LinkedIn. This is Collin Hummel.

Sarah Panus:
Perfect. I’ll put those links in the show notes as well. Yay. Okay. Well, this was brilliant. Thank you so much for coming on.

Collin Hummel:
Sarah, thank you so much. This is such a great program you have here. I appreciate being part of it.

Sarah Panus:
Thank you. Thank you. Okay, huge. Thanks again. To Collin Hummel from 3M, check out the show notes for all the amazing examples and links and how to find and connect with Collin. And we will see you all here next week. So until next time, Kindred Speakers.

Closing Remarks

Sarah Panus:
If you’re hearing my voice right now, you’re likely a corporate content marketer of some kind looking to level up your brand storytelling career. What would it feel to have the skills, confidence, and know how to advance your brand storytelling results and love the work you’re doing? In an ideal world you and your content team are high level strategic thinkers that know how to humanize your brand to drive seven X engagements and actions. You have the right creative mindset to attract your ideal audience and build brand trust and loyalty through storytelling. You’re viewed as top performers in the company and brand storytelling is valued because it’s driving business results and supporting multiple channel teams. But things don’t always go our way, right? Maybe your brand lacks, a cohesive content strategy. Maybe you and your team are asked to deliver a lot for your company and it’s hard to keep up.

Sarah Panus:
You know you need to invest in figuring out next steps in your company’s brand storytelling plans, but haven’t had the time to figure out how yet. And you need help integrating it across the organization. You personally want to level up your skills because you know, you need to know how to do these things to advance in your career. You want your work to be valued so that you love coming to work each day, attracting leads, increasing repeat, and referral actions or creating a loved brand. And in this competitive market, you’re looking for ways to stay competitive, for yourself or retaining and attracting top talent for your company. That’s why I created the Brand Storytelling Academy, a hands on three month group training program designed to help corporate content marketers attract upper funnel leads that drive bottom funnel results through storytelling. For one sixth of the cost to hire a person on the team or onboard a high level brand storytelling strategist, you and up to five people on your team can be developing and accelerating your brand storytelling skills. Think of it like a college certification program for you and your team, but you get the knowledge a lot quicker and your professor, me, has 20 years of hands on experience guiding you along the way. Curious? Fill out the application at kindredspeak.com/apply to learn more and I’ll be in touch to answer all your questions and discuss if it’s a good fit. Go to kindredspeak.com/apply.

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ABOUT SARAH PANUS

Sarah Panus is a brand storytelling marketing strategist, Minnesota mom, and owner of Kindred Speak, LLC, a remote consultancy that helps corporations attract upper-funnel leads that drive bottom-funnel results through storytelling.  Her mission is to add value to the world by humanizing brand+consumer connections. Her online courses teach content professionals inside corporations think like Editorial Directors for their brand to drive stronger results while enjoying their jobs more.  She’s spent the last 20 years helping brands including Sleep Number, Starbucks, Nestle Waters, Christos Bridal, Game Crazy, Cone Inc, and others, speak a kindred language with their audiences, driving brand advocacy and millions in revenue and brand engagements. Learn more at www.kindredspeak.com. Follow Sarah on Instagram and LinkedIn.