10 Jun Why Everybody is Crazy for Storytelling
This is the third post in a series of ebook excerpts from ”The One Content Marketing Document You Can Plan Your Whole Quarter Around.” To download the full version, visit the download page.
Storytelling has really come to the fore, particularly because of the rise of content marketing. As I’m sure we are all aware, there is no lack of content circulating around presently; a fact that will explore and learn to exploit later in this document.
So what separates good content from the less-than-stellar drivel that is all too common these days? Having an idea of what a story is and how to tell one is a major factor, and there are two ways to look at that problem. Let’s take a look at storytelling in both a macro and micro sense, to give you a clearer picture of what we mean.
What’s Your Story?
Does your company have a clear brand story, and clearly defined market? In a macro sense, you should first develop a concept of what your company’s narrative is, and who the audience for it is. In larger companies, a great deal of time and often expense will be invested in getting clear on their brand positioning, and the resulting guidelines inform all of the future marketing decisions and content creation.
Your first content strategy should be more than just a list of tactics. Before you begin, you should get clear on what your story is. It’s no accident that this document began with a hypothetical anecdote about you, staring at the blinking cursor. If it happened to draw you in and encouraged you to keep reading, then it achieved its purpose. There are tons of things you could be reading about the problem you’re experiencing, even if they aren’t a practical guide to building a strategy. Our challenge was to make this guide better, more engaging and easier to digest than the rest. A little bit of storytelling goes a long way in separating the good content from the dry, boring and purely informational text that is published en masse across the web every day.
Don’t make the mistake of trying to tackle an idea that’s too big in scope- Choose just one area of expertise and then laser-focus your energy on that one thing. Then, taking a storytelling approach, write about it at length and with authority. Explore it comprehensively, and you’ll have the document you need to start your planning around.
Without giving a complex and cerebral dissection of the storytelling process, I’ll leave you with a few simple thoughts, so that you might keep it simple, and spin a good yarn:
Every story has a beginning, a middle and an end. Complete stories have a who, what, when, where, a why and a how.
As a rule of thumb, try to avoid talking about your shiny new thing— talk instead about who’s life will be changed by the shiny new thing, and how.
This is the second post in a series of excerpts from “The One Content Marketing Document You Can Plan Your Whole Quarter Around.” To download the full version, visit the download page.