Content is king, they say. While that may be true, “content” is a technical term – soulless. What’s missing in today’s “digital content” is digital storytelling. Content on its own could mean an image, a text, or even just a combination of words. Words alone can be empty and without a silver lining, will remain unheard, and won’t create a single ripple among our audience in the online surface. Digital stories, on the other hand, do.
Stories are the oldest form of exchanging information. Who doesn’t enjoy telling or listening to a good story? Over a meal, on the bus, or on social networks, good stories are what captures us out of our day to day, even if it’s just for a moment. A story outlines experiences, the challenges faced, the solutions found, and the helping hands along the way. Stories that take our minds to another place are art.
The Elements of Digital Storytelling
First, there must be a story. The story must engage the viewer’s attention quickly and hold his interest throughout. A great digital story is highly visual – it follows the “show, don’t tell” principle. Keep in mind that great storytelling is an art that incorporates a variety of talents. Great storytellers know how to involve their listeners — how to connect with them, touch their emotions and trigger the desired response. The best storytellers use every element at their disposal, from sound effects to gestures, and they project a persona with which listeners can identify. A great digital story weaves together text, background music and images to present a total experience.
The Benefits of Storytelling in Your Digital Marketing Campaigns
- Have a better connection with customers: It’s a different way of targeting users so that they pay more attention to what you are telling them.
- It will give your brand its own identity: The stories that you create will be your own. Your communications will become completely personal and unique and no one else will be able to say the same. It will help you to stand out from the competition and establish your brand as a benchmark in the sector.
- Help customers to better identify your brand: They will remember what you say and how you say it. An identifiable brand is the one that has something to tell beyond its wish for you to buy their products. It is important to have a system in place that makes a difference to your brand and an element that customers can relate to.
- Update the brand image: Storytelling is the way of telling stories in the 21st century. It has taken over the social networks and is the go-to form of marketing for young people. Using this technique will help you to update your brand image and renew the perception that users and buyers have of your company.
- It’s applicable to all media: Storytelling has the great advantage of being a form of cross-communication. It can be applied to all aspects of digital marketing media, and its potential can already be seen in landings, emails, banners and social networks alike. It’s a completely novel way of telling things and its not complicated to use, but it does need a certain amount of planning in order to avoid making any mistakes.
5 Essential Elements Your Digital Storytelling Strategy Should Include
- Brand values: You must be able to convey the principles on which your brand is built. Sharing your brand values is necessary if you want to connect with your clients, as it is important to be able to express who you are and what you offer.
- Emotion: Emotion is the key to storytelling. It seeks to build a connection with the client and stir up something inside them in order to push them to consume. You must be able to use language that plays with emotions so that your speech ends up captivating the client, grabbing their attention and encouraging them to buy the product. It’s not just positive emotions like joy or happiness that can be used to sell, so too can negative emotions like pity or sadness. It depends on the brand which emotions they opt for when they want to convey their message to their customer. Just keep in mind that the emotion you choose to convey will be linked to your brand in the mind of your customers.
- The strengths of the product: the same way you empower your brand image through the positive aspects or brand values, you should be able to highlight the product or service that you offer. Emphasize the good things about buying into your brand’s philosophy.
- A hook: Along with emotion, your story should be articulated in such a way that it is able to engage the customer; it should captivate and grab the attention of the audience. Hooking with your stories is the main goal of storytelling. If you can ultimately do this and hold the attention of the buyers, then you will have succeeded.
Engaging with your target audience is not a single step process. In order to really captivate the attention of your social media audience, it requires a stellar overall content strategy, optimizing individual posts, and posting them when and where your audience will see them.
To learn more about digital storytelling and gain a hands-on experience creating your very own digital story, check out our 2-day digital storytelling course – Professional Certification in Digital Storytelling.