When people hear the term storytelling, pictures of famed authors and screenwriters typing away into the dead of night. It’s true, some of the greatest storytellers have written books and movies that we still read and watch today. But some of the lesser known creative storytellers happen to be behind some of the biggest companies in the world.
What is Storytelling in Content Strategy?
Storytelling in content strategy leans into the fundamental principles of story arcs to appeal to the emotions of your target audience. Rather than focusing on the what and how of your product or service, storytelling focuses on the why.
There’s a reason why storytelling is used by the biggest brands and most successful marketers. It gives companies a leg up on competitors that end up benign the difference between failure and success. Here’s what you need to know storytelling content strategy.
Why it Matters
Content that focuses on storytelling is one of the most effective strategies to engage your audience. When you consider the fact that most industries are saturated with competition, consumers are looking at more than just the product itself.
That’s not to say the quality of product isn’t important, because it still is. That being said, consumers are increasingly looking to invest their money with companies and brands that they feel a connection to, or most closely align with their values.
So, just how effective is a brand’s story? A study conducted on the matter found that effectively using storytelling in your content strategy can increase the value of your product by nearly 20 times. Which is why building the right story for your brand can help put you on the path to success.
How to Effectively Create Your Story
There’s no question that understanding the value of storytelling is important. However, crafting the right story, or the right narrative is critical to creating a brand that your customers can connect and engage with.
With that in mind, let’s break down some storytelling best practices being used by the top marketers in the game. Understanding a few of the key fundamentals, you’ll be able to build a story that truly resonates with your target audience.
The Golden Circle
The Golden Circle is a term coined by famed author and former ad executive Simon Sinek. Behind the Golden Circle is the idea that the most successful brands tell their stories differently than their counterparts. Rather than focusing on what their product is, or how it works, they focus on the why.
On the surface, the concept of the Golden Circle may seem counterintuitive. Why would customers care about why they should choose your product before they even understand what it is? There’s a simple explanation that puts it all into perspective.
As marketers, we need to understand that explaining what our product or service is, or how it works, appeals to the analytical part of our customers’ brains. What we should be doing is appealing to the emotions of our customers. Don’t sell what you do, sell why you do it.
Building Your Story Arc
The greatest writers, directors, and storytellers all understand the central idea of building what is known as a story arc. Your story arc focuses on the character(s), conflict, and resolution. Each serving a unique purpose to captivate the audience along the way.
- Characters – The character of your story is what connects your brand with your audience. Ideally, your character will be someone that your customers not only feel a connection to, but identifies with. This is why successful storytelling begins with building customer personas. Setting the stage for you to create a story arc that truly hits the mark with your audience.
- Conflict – The conflict in your story arc helps build the connection between your brand and your customer. In content marketing, the conflict typically reflects the pain points and problems that your audience is feeling. By identifying your conflict, you’re identifying the pain points your product or service solves.
- Resolution – The resolution in your story arc provides the answers or solutions to the conflict your characters are experiencing. A good resolution not only concludes the story, but provides a clear path for the next steps. In marketing, the resolution is the call to action that drives your customers to convert.
Using Video to Tell Your Story
In marketing, storytelling content strategy comes in many forms. While most marketers limit themselves to just written content, more and more brands are unlocking the potential of storytelling through video.
Great copywriting has the unique ability to rip the words right from the pages of your website, and illustrate your brand’s story in a creative way. That being said, video content has given marketers a new way to engage their audiences with style, tone, and even music that fits the brand’s voice.
At Firework, we’ve taken video storytelling in a new direction. We’ve taken the story format that has captivated social media users, and given marketers the ability to bring that same format to their websites. By doing so, you’ll finally be able to create videos that meet the attention span of today’s audience.