In just a few lines, this example of a story featured on a website for recreational vehicles has drawn in the whole family, identified a common need and cast a wide net as far as budget and target audience.
Why is storytelling so essential to ramp up your online marketing strategy?The answer can be understood in three basic theories that apply directly to human behavior and reasoning. A good story draws people in, reminds them of themselves and leaves a lasting impression.
- Stories Draw People In ~ When you look at the world we live in, imagine the many ways in which stories are told. What moves anyone to like a story? Bestselling books are giant stories, that people can’t put down, that turn their writers into millionaires and remain in the hearts and minds of their readers. Telling a good story is a talent that captures attention and holds on to it, for as long as the good story lasts. Even a story in a novel is selling something. The story itself, the characters and the interactions between them are either believable and likable, or not. A great writer can sell anything. Television shows and movies are stories. Hit songs are short stories and finally, commercials are the smallest poignant and meaningful stories. All of these products pull consumers in, touch their hearts. Stories make people cry and laugh and can move the spirit. No matter what you’re selling or offering, when you weave that element into a story, your product is now attached to the feelings that story unearths for each person who hears it. That connection keeps your name and your company permanently in their memory, like song lyrics and movie lines!
- Stories Remind Potential Customers of Their Own Lives & Experiences ~ Stories involve personal memories and details that resonate with those who have had similar experiences. When your service or company message is delivered through stories that remind consumers of their own lives, there is then a sudden connection that creates a relationship. Stories are told about people needing or using the product in their lives and due to similarities in the real lives of readers and watchers, that product is suddenly a relevant possibility in the mind of those real people – something they would use, something they truly need. Human nature relies on relationships, which are born from shared interests and experiences. These stories initiate the just like me connection. When the person in the story is just like the consumer, their product or message becomes a realistic need or option.
- Stories Leave An Impression ~ At the end of any story, an imprint is left. There are many positive imprints that don’t have to mean that readers are in love with the product or company. Winning companies can leave a reader in awe or impressed, touched, attracted or just wanting to know more. Some subscribe to the theory that even leaving a negative or severe impression, is still an impression. Negative attention is still attention. Whether your story brings good or bad connotations, the hope is to implant your company in the minds of strangers. It depends on your message, service or product, how you want to reach out. Attorneys are sometimes successful by tapping into anger, while doctors and pharmaceutical companies can count on a consumer’s fear about their health. The key is figuring out which emotion makes your service a necessity to your target audience and tapping in to those feelings with the highest number of consumers.
For all of these possibilities, imagine your self reading a story or pitch on the internet. What would grab your attention? What would keep you interested? What would spur you to act. Amazingly, as you examine and analyze which methods will be successful, remember that you too are a consumer.