Storytelling is an art and you need patience to master it overtime.
In the words of Steve Jobs, “The most powerful person in the world is the storyteller. The storyteller sets the vision, values and agenda of an entire generation that is to come.”
Stories are powerful because they transport us into other people’s mind and gives us reasons to think about something that we never thought of.
Marketing = Storytelling and
Successful Storytelling = Super Useful Leads
You read it right! Marketing in the world today is nothing but storytelling. Successful brands master the art of storytelling while others do not employ it in their marketing strategy or do it incorrectly.
Every content is a piece of story and today I will explain how to master the art of storytelling to generate super useful organic leads.
Steps to Create A Story
Storytelling is essentially composed of the below parts:
● The message that you intend to deliver.
● The audience for whom you are crafting the story.
● The medium for broadcasting your story.
If you get these 3 things right then you can craft a great story for your audience. Now, let’s learn the steps to craft your own story:
1- Understand Your Audience
You already have the message that you intend to deliver. Based on the message, you need to identify and understand your audience. Follow the below steps:
● Find exact facts about your target demographics like population, income etc. The American Fact Finder is a place where you can find that exact data about your target audience.
● Understand the Neethling Brain Instrument (NBI) profile of your audiences. The NBI profile can give you direct insights about the thinking style of the audiences. Under the NBI profile, thinking styles are divided into 4 categories namely L1, R1, L2 and R2. L1 is the left cerebral quadrant thinking style where people think logically based on facts. R1 is the right cerebral quadrant thinking style where people don’t like too much details. They think of the bigger pictures and aren’t afraid to take risks. L2 is the left limbic quadrant thinking style were individuals avoid taking risks and always go with proper planning and research. R2: is the right limbic quadrant thinking style where people are most likely to take decisions based on the group’s thinking. If you are aware of your audience’s thinking styles you can prepare a story that instantly convinces them to take a positive action.
● Conduct interviews and surveys and gain direct insights from your audiences before you create your next story.
● Take the help of Twitter trends and hashtags or browse FB profiles of your audiences to understand about their likes and dislikes.
● Spy on your competitor’s websites or social channel to see what type of content and stories they post or more specifically which content pieces receive the maximum traction?
● Create customer personas and a complete diagram of the customer journey from information stage to the purchase stage.
● Pay attention to the reader comments and try to solve their problems in your next post.
● Attend conferences and seminars to interact directly with your desired audience group and gain insights.
2- Know Your Purpose of Telling Your Story and Create a Character
Every story should have a solid purpose. Remember the purpose of your story should not be a sale or product promotion. Millennials hate stuffs that promote brands and they instantly discard your business if you try doing that!
Instead, a better approach is to first determine the purpose of the story. Solving the problems of your target audience should be the sole purpose of your story then only people can connect to your brand and its products.
Moreover, always create a character so that your audiences remembers your brand. Stories without a character are often lost. Nike’s Find Your Greatness is an ideal example of sharing your brand story where the characters are the audiences themselves.
3- Polish The Message In Your Story
An incredible example of brand messaging via storytelling can be seen in the Google India Search Reunion video which is based on the India-Pakistan partition. The video has received more than 10 million views and over 8 thousand comments. An incredible way to win the hearts of the audiences.
Here are some ways to polish your message in the story:
● Add an emotional hook to your story that can direct catch the attention of your audiences.
● Work hard on the video’s music and narrative because both of these elements can turn a video from good to great. Make sure to read the licensing questions related to the legal use of music before you use them in your brand videos.
● Use voices from real people because people tend to take them extremely seriously.
● Apply the hero’s journey techniques that comprises of 12 steps as explained in the figure below.
● Leverage the power of 3 of the most critical components of a good story namely pity, pain, and catharsis.
● Create content for all phases of the customer journey. This is one of the crucial aspects of lead generation marketing. Your story telling should evolve gradually. You can create a separate story for each step in your sales funnel.
● Have a strong and confident voice in the story and make sure every story is in resonance with your brand philosophies.
5- Use The Best Tools to Craft Your Story
You need to use the right tools in order to ease your task and to scale up your reach. Here are some of the best tools in the industry that can make storytelling creation and distribution extremely easier:
● Canva: This tool can help you to create awesome images that you can use in your storytelling.
● Instagram Stories: You can easily create tutorial Instagram stories on platforms like Instagram. Have a look at how Etsy creates powerful tutorial stories on Instagram.
● Visage: This tool lets you create effective on-brand graphics to convince people. This tool is best for creating survey graphics and infographics.
● Facebook Live: using this incredible platform to share live stories with your target audiences.
Last but not the least, use one of these top lead generation tools to reach your prospects by way of email marketing your content marketing.
6- Persuade Your Audiences to Take An Action
Motivation leads to action. When people feel motivated from your stories, they react and this reaction results in a positive action. Follow the below strategies to persuade your audiences to take an action:
● If you continue telling people about the things they already know, you can’t drive action. Start telling people about things they don’t know and they will instantly start doing such things.
● Use a Call to Action that is acceptable by most of the people.
● We all know that webinars are an effective medium to reach relevant audiences. Ever thought of using storytelling in your webinars? If you haven’t then you must start doing so. Don’t just tell your audience how your product can help them – show them. Set up a use case of your product that matches your audience’s needs, and share your screen to demonstrate with a narrative that they can relate to.
● Don’t be negative! Invoke a positive change in your story and you will be amazed to find a majority of people accepting the change in their lives.
● Create stories that lead to empathy because a feeling of empathy leads to release of oxytocin in the brain. Oxytocin is also known as ‘the bonding chemical’ meaning it helps to induce feelings of trust in the minds of your audiences.
Storytelling is in fact the most powerful mediums of communication that can generate lots of relevant leads for your business. Always remember that successful storytelling needs a lot of practice. Follow the steps discussed in the article and create stories that builds your brand in a positive manner.