A well known shift in content marketing over the past 5 years has taken the form of storytelling. At its most basic definition, the digital storytelling process involves using a mixture of content and digital media to bring a narrative to life. Consumers have shown that a product or service that offers an experience is much more attractive to them. Storytelling takes content marketing to a whole new level where a customer is understood, inspired, compelled to use their imagination.
Principal analyst Brian Solis with Alimeter Group shares with MarketingLand what marketers must know today about the gap between content marketing and storytelling.
What should businesses know about storytelling?
Brian says: There are some common pillars of quality storytelling — and it all starts with knowing your audience, what they love/don’t love, what they value, etc.
Aside from the seven common plots of story, there are pillars that resonate with certain audiences, depending on their goals and yours. These include inspiration, usefulness, importance and inclusivity, just to name a few — and these apply to content marketing, too.
How does storytelling make an impact on digital marketing?
Digital storytelling is now crucial to a successful digital marketing campaign tying together several forms of media; social media at the forefront of this campaign. In any successful marketing campaign, the goal is to achieve wider engagement from your target audience and build up a loyal customer base that identify with your brand and cling to your product or service for longer. Storytelling in digital marketing addresses the needs of a fast-paced society in which people cut through a lot of ‘fluff content’ and look to receive information and consume content as fast as possible.
Capturing the attention of potential customers is an important step towards reaching one of your main goals – gaining your customers’ loyalty. That is why storytelling has become so important to the success of digital marketing. It sets apart vibrant brands from simple businesses and loyal consumers from one-time, stop-in shoppers.
Here are three ways storytelling impacts digital marketing and how you can benefit from it:
1. Build up trust with your audience
Traditional boring and straight-forward marketing doesn’t help you form a bond with consumers. Instead, it’s information-packed content overwhelming or boring the user and often reads like assembly instructions. Storytelling is much more intriguing and urges people to follow along engaging with the story. It addresses consumer pain points on a deeper, more intimate level and doesn’t give off the impersonal and cold vibes of a hard sell.
2. Connecting with your target audience
Most consumers have mastered an art of their own — ignoring sales pitches. These days, people are inundated with marketing ads. This has conditioned the brain to skim information and dismiss anything unattractive, simple, and mundane. Digital storytelling, however, can engage them in a manner that leaves them more receptive to marketing efforts.
3. Branding with a genuine meaning
Actions speak much louder than words for customers of 2022. Using digital storytelling to demonstrate how your company is dedicated to your mission, as well as your customers, can help you prove that you’re in it for the right reasons. Taking people along on your journey to show step by step how your business evolved, the experiences you’ve had, and how this helped you provide solutions to their problems will capture your audience’s attention and personify your business.
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