My name is Amanda Marufu and I am 22 years and as now widely believed by Digital Marketers everywhere, Marketing is no longer about selling to a customer it is all about telling your story.
Although “Good content isn’t about good storytelling. It’s about telling a true story well.”
Gone are the days when consumers wanted to be sold a dream, THE DREAM
Now brands are learning more and more that its all about relating with your customer well.
So to define Digital Story Telling it is simply the practise of everyday people like you and me using Digital Tools to tell your story.
And In the spirit of telling a story let me tell you about my story.
I won’t begin with my childhood because that would take more time than we have but I will start with my O Levels.
Being born in this generation of course all we’ve known is strikes and constantly high prices but during my first term in form 4 my mom was retrenched from her work and I was taken out of school.
And now my boss doesn’t know this part but around this time last year I was watching my whole life get packed up and be put in a box.
Most of you might be thinking, oh no, no big deal she was just moving and we were moving alright, all the way to the streets
At that time we had no idea what we were going to do to get out of that situation but I knew I wanted to learn digital marketing, I wanted to be a videographer and I wanted to start my own show to uplift women and so I did, with no money and with realistically no guarantee of success
In the words of Pam Moore, ‘’You can never go wrong by investing in communities and the human beings within them.”
Most brands and Companies forget that they are their customers more than anything, more than your product or your service you are the person buying that product or service and that is why Brand will beat selling every single time.
The 7 elements of Digital Story Telling
- Point of View. What is the main point of the story and what is the perspective of the author?
Dove sells soap, we literally use every day and that arguably has absolutely no story behind it whatsoever. Seriously its just Soap?
But Dove for years now have been incorporating story telling into their marketing by doing stories on real women, ie) not models.
This focus has meant that women have identified with, liked and followed the company across the Internet. They feel cared for by Dove, and recognised as being worthy of feeling beautiful. This has all been done by telling stories about beauty, whether it’s the beauty of a mother and daughter relationship or the beauty of a face and body that is generally viewed as being ‘average’ and they even took it a step further and began to tell stories about the men in their communities as well.
- The second point is Emotional Content
When Dove began its Men + Care campaign they told told a real, compelling story about a father simply wishing to see his child. It works because we have a story here, a video that tells us about something that stirs up emotions
And it links those emotions to the healing, reuniting power of soap.
To understand this, understand that Dove sells soap that it feels takes care of the people who use it. It is simple soap that helps you look after your skin. Link that idea to a dad coming home from service to see his child, and you have a compelling story.
If you’re a brand and you engineer happiness with your product, show how you do this. Tap into the emotions you create, and then use that insight in your content.
3. A Dramatic Question
TOMS a few years back decided to ask the question what if you went barefoot for a day and its started an annual barefoot day in which for each Toms shoe bought they would donate a pair of shoe to underprivileged kids and since then other shoe brands have started to recreate this4
Which takes us to number 4, The Gift of Your Voice
Your voice is the vehicle in which you tell your story, so this means your narrator whether this is you or a company representative needs to know when to speak up or low, capture the audiences attention through eye contact and most of all capture your voice even when not using video at all
Toms did this well through Instagram they started donating a pair of shoes for each picture of bare feet that was tagged on their social media, ie ) they weren’t selling and no one was buying anything but they were staying true to their story and changing lives while they did it
Other things to remember when telling your digital story are
- The Power of the Soundtrack: A digital story’s soundtrack can include music or other sound effects that amplify the emotionality of subject matter or support the story line. However, this element should be approached cautiously as musical soundtracks add an additional layer of information that can be distracting as it competes with the audio of the author’s voice. Moreover, issues concerning copyright and attribution affect the use and appropriation of a soundtrack
- Economy: A digital story should be no longer than three minutes. With this in mind, a written narrative should not be any longer than one and half pages double spaced and less than 400 words. If the narrative is any longer than three minutes, the author takes the risk of losing the listener’s attention. The art and craft of editing and revision are needed to economize the salience of a narrative.
- Pacing: Pacing is connected to the inflection, cadence and clarity of an author’s voice. The best practice is to record the entire narrative in one take, without any interruptions or digital edits. Authors should pause for each comma, semi-colon and period that they read while seeking adequate breath control when recording narratives. They should infer inquiry when reading a sentence with a question mark and project excitement when reading a statement with an exclamation mark. To master the pace of a digital story requires both patience and practice, yet, most importantly; it requires authors to listen to, and feel comfortable with, their own voice.
- The Overall Purpose of the Story.
If there’s one thing that should be clear, it’s this: true storytelling isn’t about telling your story; it’s about telling the story of your customers and their interests through your brand.
Doing so requires knowing your audience inside and out, making your audience a key part of that storytelling, creating feelings of identity and wonder, and presenting a story that feels entirely new.
Why I told you about my story is for you to understand my audience, mellinials we are the generation that has had to above anything and everything else create our own opportunities from the guys who have had to sell cellphones on the side of the road to the guys who have become middle men and instead of me coming to sell myself and say I am the best Digital Marketer the world has ever seen or I have the most knowledge on the topic like was seen in a lot of previous selling tactics
I can tell you that I am great at what I do because I did it even before I was being paid to do it and because digital marketing is not merely my job it is a part of my story