Companies in the mission-driven business of sustainability and climate solutions need great storytelling to cultivate the compelling “why” consumers should go along on their brand journey. While many focus on data and technology as the basis of their story, there’s an often-overlooked creative facet that’s equally critical—the mythos in storytelling.
Mythos was called out in Aristotle’s Poetics as the “arrangement of incidents” in a story. It’s the weaving of a narrative so that it resonates with your audience. According to Aristotle, it’s not enough to have a groundbreaking product or a revolutionary idea. The way you tell your story, or how you blend together its LOGOS (Logic) with ETHOS (Credibility) and PATHOS (Emotion), is the formula for composing a compelling story.
You might see these ingredients in the following examples:
Examples: Tesla, Patagonia, the Ocean Cleanup
- LOGOS – Tesla favors how logical, efficient, high-performance approach can drive its brand story. Their approach to electric vehicles is about offering a smart alternative that can outperform traditional cars. This logical appeal resonates with consumers who value both sustainability and innovation.
- ETHOS – Patagonia is a brand synonymous with environmental responsibility. Their commitment goes beyond products; it’s about a corporate ethos that champions sustainability. This credibility resonates with consumers who seek brands that align with their values.
- PATHOS – The Ocean Cleanup taps into PATHOS, pulling at heartstrings with the visual and emotional impact of ocean pollution. Their mission connects emotionally, drawing support from those moved to protect our oceans.
The real magic happens when these elements blend into a cohesive MYTHOS. You do that by creating a narrative that’s not just logical or credible but also emotionally engaging.
The Mythos in IKEA’s work in sustainability
We can see the interplay of these three narrative ingredients in IKEA’s work in sustainability. LOGOS is evident in IKEA’s practical, affordable, and innovative designs, appealing to the logic of consumers seeking functionality and value. ETHOS shines through their extensive sustainability initiatives, like sourcing eco-friendly materials and aiming for 100% renewable energy use, establishing them as a credible leader in environmental stewardship.
However, it’s the PATHOS where IKEA’s mythos truly comes to life. They don’t just sell furniture; they sell the dream of a better, more sustainable everyday life. Their narrative is about creating a cozy, welcoming home that also cares for the planet. This emotional connection speaks to those who want to make eco-friendly choices without compromising on style or comfort.
IKEA’s story resonates because it’s not just about furniture; it’s about being part of a global movement towards sustainability, offering a sense of belonging and purpose to customers. This cohesive blend of logic, credibility, and emotional appeal positions IKEA as a brand that understands its audience’s desires for a sustainable, yet aesthetically pleasing, lifestyle.
Connecting to that emotion is about understanding the audience’s values, desires, and fears. It should be a story that people can see themselves in, a story that inspires and motivates.
It Matters How You Tell It
Companies navigating a landscape of innovation and sustainability shouldn’t look over the power of storytelling and the art of mythos. It’s not just about the technology or the data; it’s about how you weave these elements into a narrative that captures the imagination and inspires action. It’s not just about what you’re doing; it’s about how you tell your story. Get in touch with us to develop your mythos.