As a professional services marketer, you are tirelessly looking for new ways to engage your audiences. It can get discouraging to perform traditional marketing methods and not know if you are really making a connection. You attend professional seminars and lectures that cover important points to consider. However, you can’t seem to find the right ingredient that allows you to bridge the gap from concept to emotional connection with your audiences.
Along with many other marketing professionals, you’ve known your firm’s story for a long time. The story is part of the firm’s cultural heritage and it explains why the firm exists. In a lot of ways, your firm’s story engages and connects with people on an emotional level. This post aims to help you tap into the storytelling magic with digital marketing methods.
Working together with My Story, Inc., Rudolph and Sletten captures their project story about Green Music Center.
Digital storytelling is a method for leveraging your firm’s brand by weaving an intricate series of experiences via blog posts, social media channels and presentations that include narratives, anecdotes, images and video. Peppering your story with visual moments of encouragement and inspiration for your audiences will make a connection. Demonstrating you passion, humor and style will have audiences asking for more! These elements will create the connection you desire and promote engagement with people who can best identify with your firm.
Some valuable points to first consider when conceptualizing your story include:
- Understand your audience’s interests.
- Understand where your thought leaders (characters) excel. Understand their comfort zone and challenge them to get outside the proverbial box through conversation.
- Come up with the final theme before you fill in the story.
- When your story is stuck, think about what will NOT happen next.
- Offer a compelling reason why you are telling this story. What is the defining belief you hold that fuels this story – tell it from the heart.
- Do not fuss over perfecting the story; there are plenty of stories to tell.
Digital Storytelling Tools and Visual Content Statistics to Consider
If you are sitting on the fence, perhaps the following information and statistics will convince you to take the leap, get the creative juices flowing and the camera’s rolling!
A blog is a powerful tool that offers creative ways to tell your story. Here are three examples on how to make an emotional connection with a blog post:
- A post can be a method for telling a story about how you solved a client’s challenges that incorporates images or video.
- A post is a way to bridge a connection between your firm’s leadership and audiences. Incorporating images and videos that portray the human side of your firm’s employees will prompt your audiences to say, “It would be great to work with that firm!”
- A post is also a great way to stay connected with your existing clients by sharing your firm’s experiences and offering new ideas about you can work together in the future.
Social Media Channels:
The following points are some important social media statistics to consider with regard to storytelling and visual content.
- According to a recent HubSpot study, of 1,500 B2B and B2C company Facebook Pages, it was determined that photo posts generate 53% more likes and 104% more comments than average posts. In addition, photo posts receive 84% more link clicks than plain text status updates or links with thumbnail pics.
- Pinterest generated more referral traffic for businesses than Google+, YouTube and LinkedIn combined. (Source: Shareaholic)
- Photos and video posts on Pinterest are referring more traffic than Twitter, StumbleUpon, Linkedin and Google+. (Source: Simple Measured)
- Twitter, knowing they fall short when it comes to visual content, launched an integrated mobile video app called Vine. The intent is to provide brief clips that compliment the brevity of their microposts. To learn more about how marketers are using Vine, read this article from Mashable.
The recent post, A Content Marketing Approach to Designing Presentations That Amaze, discussed the importance of developing a presentation that weaves a story and enchants audiences. A presentation is another tool for providing visual content that builds excitement, heightens interest, and amazes audiences with a visual platform and message.
Great images tell a story. The success of your content marketing and storytelling experience is dependent on visual stimulus. Investing the time and effort to capture a moment with a picture that gives audiences a glimpse into your firm’s day-to-day practices will build your firm’s visual brand. Pictures can also provide an historical record of your firm’s path to success. Collaborate together with your firm’s creative minds to come up with images that are fun and compelling.
The following points are some important video statistics to consider:
- Viewers spend 100% more time on pages with videos on them. (Source: Marketing Sherpa)
- Posts with videos attract 3 times more inbound links than plain text posts. (Source: SEOmoz)
- 85% of the US internet audience watches videos online. The 25-34 age group watches the most online videos, and adult males spend 40% more time watching videos on the internet than females. (Sources: comScore and Nielsen)
- Over 60 hours of videos are uploaded each minute on YouTube.com (Source: YouTube)
- Mobile video subscription is expected to hit $16 billion in revenue by 2014, with over 500 million subscribers. (Source: Ooyala)
- Viewers are 85% more likely to purchase a product after watching a product video. (Internet Retailer)
With that, I will leave you with a final note. When you communicate simple truths with digital storytelling, you will capture the magic that reaches the heart of your readers and nourishes their soul.
For further reading, check out Professional Services Content Marketing: Let Video Tell Your Story.