I can think of many things that have been posted and said about the impact that a good story can have.
Hey, I am sure you can remember those inspiring life stories your grandparents would tell you throughout the years, the exciting stories of the latest adventure your friend had experienced that kept you hooked till the end, or even the tears that rolled down your eyes as you read that amazing book or watched that powerful movie (yes, you know you have done that! 🙂 ).
All of these instances have one common denominator – emotions.
Emotions make a lasting impression.
That is why brands focus on creating a story behind each ad campaign, content creation strategy, etc. so that in those few seconds they have to successfully ‘grab your attention’ they can inform, establish an emotional connection, carve their message and affect response through the impact that content (a story) makes and the value that it offers. That is what drives people to trust, to share content, as well as to potentially make a purchase as it also affects consumer decision making.
As stated in this 2017 article by Susanna Gebauer in The Social Ms:
“Contrary to what many of us may believe, buying decisions are 80% emotional and only 20% based on logic.” (Source: Fuel Design)
This reminds me of one of my favorite quotes by poet Maya Angelou:
“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Maya Angelou
That also translates to when your content successfully represents your brand’s message and voice, makes a difference, builds trust with your audience and makes them feel heard, understood, valued, etc.
The importance and impact of good content is undeniable.
- 89% of B2B marketers use Content Marketing and 85% attribute Content Creation (higher quality, more efficient) as the top factor contributing to their success as shown in the findings of the Content Marketing Institute/MarketingProfs’ B2B Content Marketing 2017: Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends—North America sponsored by Brightcove
- As presented in Cision’s “The Ultimate List of Content Marketing Statistics” article 84 percent of people expect brands to provide content that entertains, tells stories, provides solutions, and creates experiences and events. (Meaningful Brands, 2017)
This brings me to some key components of a good content and storytelling strategy.
Of key importance when creating your content is knowing what interests, triggers and motivates your audience.
This information is gathered through one of the oldest yet most effective tools out there – listening.
You need to listen, understand and have a clear perspective of what your audience is interested in regarding your industry, brand, etc., what triggers their positive emotional response and be able to translate it into content that delivers.
In Social Media (one of the top – if not the top – used content distribution channels) this is achieved through Social Listening tools which allow you to decipher the key topics of interests, trends, etc. that you can refer to in order to create content that resonates with your audience, offers solutions to any problems they might be interested in solving and that they as a result will want to share with others.
Quality and Storytelling
Make your content clear, concise, compelling and supported by data offering your audience a complete, 360 view of your authority on the topic, your message and your voice.
By adding a touch of storytelling to your content strategy you offer a uniqueness to the reader’s experience.
Empathy through storytelling allows for you create content that is relatable, memorable, affects people, is powerful, is helpful, is authentic, builds trust, makes your audience feel understood, makes them want to know more about you and your brand, etc.
As Neil Patel states in his article How to Leverage Storytelling to Increase Your Conversions
Humans are born storytellers and adore visual communication. Storytelling gives life or meaning to a scenario and makes that emotional connection, provoking feelings of ecstasy, sorrow, or peace and captivating your audience. This is exactly what you need when it comes to your social media marketing strategy.
Consistency is also imperative to the success of your strategy.
Joe Pulizzi quotes in his 2016 article for CMI, based on the study Content Marketing Institute/MarketingProfs’ B2B Content Marketing 2017: Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends—North America mentioned above, that 85% percent of top performers deliver content consistently.
Key to this is that the more valuable content you put out there, the more impact you will have.
Distribution and Repurposing
It is no secret that Social Media is a top content distribution channel.
Scott Langdon states in his 2018 “30 Content Marketing Statistics, Trends & Data for Your 2018 Strategy” article (via Higher Visibility) that 87% of marketers use Social Media for content delivery. (Source: CMI)
There are multiple content distribution channels, multiple content types (Videos, Images, Live Streaming, Tutorials, Blog Posts, Infographics, etc.), and multiple content purposes.
Among the questions that should be answered are:
- Where is you audience?
- What channels do they use?
- What channel(s) work best for your content distribution needs?
- What type of content engages your targeted audience most and delivers best results?
Once you establish the above you will need to start considering repurposing of your existing content to adapt it to your distribution needs.
Content is valuable, but it is also time consuming.
As such, repurposing is an important step that will allow you to effectively use your created content throughout the different distribution channels.
You can take sections of your created content that you want to highlight and adapt them to the needs and requirements of each channel.
Some ways you can repurpose your content are:
- Video Tutorials
- Blog Posts
and many others…
Also, make it easy for your audience to be able to share and redistribute your content as well – that opens up more opportunities and outreach.
As with every campaign, you need to monitor the success of your content strategy as well.
Data analysis through your preferred analytics tool is crucial to determining what works and what doesn’t, what needs improvement and what doesn’t, which content is creating engagement and which isn’t, what type of content works best for a specific channel and which doesn’t, etc. and is instrumental to your decision making process so as to achieve maximum results.
“We need to stop interrupting what people are interested in and be what people are interested in.” Craig Davis, former Chief Creative Officer at J. Walter Thompson.
Every brand has a story to tell.
Content is the vehicle to reaching an audience, engaging them and building trust. Storytelling adds style and power to the ride. 🙂
Would love to hear your thoughts on this topic in the comment section!
Good vibes only and have a great day!
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