Though the mediums in which we communicate have changed, storytelling remains prevalent across our culture. There’s something comforting in old stories told from our grandfather, or reminiscing with friends about the good ole days and the crazy things we did in our youth.
We’re presented with these moments to get lost in a story, lost in laughter, lost in sadness, lost in intrigue. Stories transcend gender, race, and time and provide an opportunity for us to connect to each other. Lean into our humanity a little more. And share in the commandership of life through storytelling on social media.
Think of a recent post you read or commercial you saw that moved you or inspired you. How did it make you feel? Did it illicit a reaction? For me, the recent Gillette commercial comes to mind, Shaquem Griffin: Your Best Never Comes Easy.
What makes this commercial powerful is that it invokes an emotional response, it offers inspiration. It makes you pause and reflect.
As brands build out social media marketing strategies, it’s important to start with the story you are going to share. It’s not enough to have a superior product, clean images, and sophisticated taglines. This is about creating a narrative that changes the way the audience thinks and feels, and moves them from one place to another.
Some things to consider when storytelling on social media:
Who’s your audience?
It is easy to miss your opportunity for meaningful connection if you’re trying to present to too broad an audience. A good storyteller knows his audience. Maybe you have more than one, which requires you to tailor your narrative to different receivers? And if so, what platforms do you need to deliver your tailored story?
Knowing The Who, The Where, and The How is as critical to your end-game as the story itself.
What is a problem you solve?
Understanding The Who, Where, and How is first. From there, story-spinning brands need to be able to offer a solution to a problem potential customers are wrestling with. Create value. Provide a takeaway.
Your brand’s story can’t only be about your brand; it has to fold in the needs, challenges, and opportunities that exist for your customer.
How to create a story to influence action?
When crafting your story, the point isn’t to present the audience with an informational, facts-based piece. This isn’t hard-lined journalism; this is influence. This is the moment to evoke feelings or introduce a new concept. Use warmth and humor, sentiment and humanity. Pretty words or even pointed words.
This is your chance to describe who you are, what you stand for, and what makes your brand better than your competition across the virtual street.
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Social media was born from a desire to connect and share, to tell the inhabitants of our spinning rock who we are and what we’re here to do. However your brand decides to grow, whatever successes you’re projecting for the future, let it begin with a well-told story.
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