What’s the story? In old school advertising, this simple question sparks the beginning of a productive brainstorming meeting for a planned campaign. This question is even more relevant today, in an age where the digital space is the new battleground and factors like search engine optimization (SEO) can dictate victory.
From the memorable and heartwarming/comedic/action-packed ads released by big brands over the years, to the millions of fresh stories that influencers post on apps like TikTok and Instagram, it’s plain as day that story driven content is still king. And given the rapid evolution of digital content on these and other platforms, one-dimensional approaches to ads are unlikely to work.
If you want to capture people’s attention and improve your online presence, you need to use old school story driven marketing to create content that’s well suited for new school platforms.
In fact, story driven marketing has been changing the game for many companies over the years. One example is Quincy Compressor’s Stop the Hiss viral video. Essentially an ad disguised as a short film, Stop the Hiss stars the anthropomorphic version of the industrial air system leak – the hiss himself. Combining the actor’s intense narration, horror movie-like cinematography, and action-packed scoring, the video tells the simple story of how Quincy Compressors are the solution to unchecked industrial leaks. Hinged on this simple idea, the video succeeds at telling a compelling tale that urges online sharing even among those who are totally uninterested in industrial air systems.
Another awesome example of story driven marketing is SoundCloud’s First on SoundCloud video series. These one to two-minute videos tell the stories of some of the first and most promising artists to upload and stream their music for fans on the increasingly popular platform. Each video is a quick look into what drives these artists to create music, their process, and their vision for the future. Alongside the #SCFirst hashtag, the First on SoundCloud video series was successful in not just shining a spotlight on obscure musicians, but also in convincing more online listeners to tune in on SoundCloud. Today, even NASA has a SoundCloud playlist.
So, if you’re a startup or fledgling company who wants to not just attract more customers but more traffic to your website, ask yourself: what’s your story? As Arianna Huffington explains, “People think in stories, not statistics, and marketers need to be master storytellers.”
The impact of story-based marketing on SEO
Indeed, Search Engine Watch reports that storytelling can boost content marketing and actual conversion rates by 30%. Experts attribute this increase to how storytelling as a content strategy can allow your brand to tap into the age-old human need for compelling tales. Furthermore, storytelling can be applied to digital content in a number of ways. From social media hashtag campaigns that compel customers to tell your story for you, to taking your potential clients on a journey that ends on your website, a great story is also a key aspect of developing content for SEO purposes. In fact, Ayima identifies content SEO as one of the biggest challenges for startups who want to establish a presence online. This refers to the content that you publish on your website and how relevant it is to what Google users search for. And if you can tell the story of your brand in a way that touches your target audience, you’re already halfway to an effective SEO campaign that can allow you to rank higher on Google.
Story driven marketing is not just a buzzword. For your company, it could be the key to gaining more traffic and conversions on your website, establishing a solid online brand presence, and growing your business. Whether through video marketing, blogs, social posts, or other forms of digital content, tapping into your brand’s story can allow you to go farther than ever before.
Guest authored by Sandra Berg. Written specially for VideoScribe.