Before we jump into all this, we first want to say that becoming a StoryBrand Certified Guide is totally worth it.
Becoming a StoryBrand Guide grants you access to exclusive Guide tools and resources as well as the Guide network. Not to mention you get to promote the best marketing framework on the planet and get paid to do it.
Just so we’re clear – if you’re able and willing, you should invest in becoming a StoryBrand Guide.
However, sometimes it’s not workable for whatever reason, be it financial, physical, or something else.
So, for those of you that are interested in becoming a StoryBrand Guide, but can’t get around to the certification workshop, here are our tips on becoming a StoryBrand Guide without getting certified.
The Essentials of Being a StoryBrand Guide
As we said in our “StoryBrand Certified Guide” post, being a StoryBrand Guide is a lot like being a marketing consultant. You work with clients to identify business/marketing goals, craft strategies for reaching those goals and execute on that strategy.
Pretty straightforward. You know what they say, “Easy in theory; difficult in practice.”
So, if being a StoryBrand Guide is a lot like being a marketing consultant, then there should be some essentials that are similar between the two.
Like identifying a client’s business/marketing goals. A StoryBrand Guide should be able to listen to a client’s needs and help them articulate where they want their business to go. This often involves goal setting and could like “increase revenue and profits” or “increase the lifetime value of each customer”. No matter the client or industry, goal setting is going to be standard amongst both StoryBrand Guides and consultants.
Identifying goals is crucial but developing game plans to reach those goals is equally important. This is where you’ll need to be prepared to lead your clients in the arena of marketing strategy. A strategy is essentially your game plan for reaching a goal (think StoryBrand framework for a clearer marketing message or a marketing funnel to improve revenue and profit). Many business owners are so involved in the day-to-day of their business that it’s difficult to see the big picture. Think big picture and break down the aspects of your plan. This practice will help you as a StoryBrand Guide or marketing consultant.
Finally, you’ll not only offer your thinking skills to clients, you’ll also offer your practical know-how. This is where execution comes in. Quite simply, this is where you put into action the plan that you laid out for the client. This might look like writing the copy for an email sequence or building the website on WordPress. Of all the essentials, we guarantee this one will be a constant no matter your profession. No matter your level of expertise, you’re going to have to execute!
Skills to Master for StoryBrand Guides
If you’re going to be a StoryBrand Guide without the certification, you’re going to want to sharpen these marketing skills. Both Guides and consultants find these skills to be foundational for any type of client or industry.
Many marketers consider copywriting to be essential to the craft of marketing. If you can excel at using words to sell things and communicate, you’ll have a competitive advantage over other consultants.
Every project you work on as a Guide will require strategic thinking at some level. Learning how to identify problems and goals and craft strategies to achieve them is only going to benefit you and your clients.
Design and Development
In relation to the other skills listed here, design and development are often the most outsourced. Even having simple knowledge about the design and development process is going to make working with clients way easier.
Sales and Client Relationships
As a Guide, you’ll be selling for your clients and you’ll be selling for yourself. Developing interpersonal skills to deal with conflict and move people forward will serve you in more ways than one as a Guide.
Principles to Implement for StoryBrand Guides
As a StoryBrand Guide, you will champion the SB7 framework. With that framework comes several principles. Use these principles to guide your business efforts as well as your clients.
- The Customer is the Hero, not your brand.
- Companies tend to sell solutions to external problems, but customers buy solutions to internal problems.
- Customers aren’t looking for another hero; they’re looking for a guide.
- Customers trust a guide who has a plan.
- Customers do not take action unless they are challenged to take action.
- Every human being is trying to avoid a tragic ending.
- Never assume people understand how your brand can change their lives. Tell them.
Clients, markets, industries, and projects might change, but principles are useful in any context.
Other Marketing Certifications to Consider
Okay, so, let’s assume you decided to back off the Guide certification for a bit. What are some other certifications that marketers can obtain to differentiate themselves?
Here are a few of the best that we’ve come across.
- Professional Certified Marketer from the American Marketing Association
- Fundamentals of Digital Marketing from Google
- Google Analytics Qualification from Google
- Google Ads Certifications from Google
- Inbound Marketing from HubSpot
- Digital Marketing Nanodegree from Udacity
- Marketing Certificate Programs from eCornell
- Digital Marketing Certification from SEMrush
- Facebook Blueprint Certification from Facebook
- Advanced Social Media Strategy from Hootsuite
Feel free to tweet at us if you come across another marketing certification that Guides can use to differentiate themselves.
The lesson here? Specialize in something, get certified, and wear that badge of honor.
If you want to become a StoryBrand Guide but don’t want to pay the hefty price tag that comes along with it, there are some Guide essentials that you can implement in your own marketing consulting that will help.
You can also develop skills that many StoryBrand Guides rely on, as well as employ the seven StoryBrand principles in your work.
Finally, there are many other marketing certifications you can get to differentiate yourself as a Guide. Specialize in something that’s in-demand and that customers will pay a premium for.
Being a Guide is simply that – you are a guide to your clients. Guide them with boldness and wisdom.