“Do you know what is the most often missing ingredient in a sales message? It’s the sales message that doesn’t tell an interesting story. Storytelling… good storytelling… is a vital component of a marketing campaign.” – Gary Halbert, author, marketing practitioner, copywriter
People love stories. Whether it takes place around a campfire, besides a child’s bed, in a boardroom, or behind a podium, storytelling is an important part of the human experience. Today’s world may be more connected than ever before, but technology can actually leave many of us feeling disconnected. Stories give us the chance to slow down, listen, and reconnect with each other. Take a moment to think about the kind of videos that tend to go viral on social media. The one thing they have in common is that they move us in some way, and the stories that move us are the stories we share.
We talk about the power of storytelling a lot, but what does it actually mean? More importantly, what does it mean for your brand? We’re here to help you hone your vision and grow your brand into something beautiful. One way we can achieve that together is by showing you how to harness the potential of powerful storytelling using your social media platform. Your followers want to know who you are and why they should care about what you have to say. It’s easy to reach your target audience, but getting them to stick around and engage is a little harder. When you tell a consistent story about who you are, why your message is important, and what unique expertise your brand brings to the market, you’ll find this really connects with your audience. That kind of sincere connection helps to establish your authority and motivate action. It can even build brand loyalty!
While all of us have an ear for stories, not all of us know how to tell them effectively. Don’t let this stop you, though. Like any new skill, it just takes a little patience and practice to crack it, and our team is here to help! Below, we’re going to outline a few simple ways you can use digital storytelling to enhance your social media accounts starting today.
Show the human side of your business
People connect with people, not brands. Make an effort to create a personal brand that resonates with your followers by sharing what your office is up to, what your staff is learning, or a look behind the scenes. Social media shouldn’t be treated as a diary, though, so don’t put too many details out there. Make sure anything you share is something you’re comfortable with the whole world knowing!
Share the story of your brand
Your followers won’t buy into your brand, but they will buy into the story behind it. An authentic connection can’t exist without a backstory your audience can believe in. Sharing any struggles you’ve overcome to succeed gives people a way of relating to you. Describing your sources of knowledge – degrees, certifications, years of experience – demonstrate why you’re considered an expert in your field. Share your own personal success stories, and don’t forget to share the way your services have helped transform your clients’ lives, too! Every piece of content you post, no matter how simple or small, reinforces the story you’re communicating to your followers.
Build on your narrative in updates
One of the most effective ways to tell a story is to do just that – simply tell a story. Facebook, in particular, is an excellent medium for upgrading your status updates to miniature blogs, thanks to its lack of character limits. But even Twitter and Instagram can be a tool for storytelling. Marry a compelling photo with a well-crafted caption on Instagram, or keep readers coming back for more by breaking your story into several parts on Twitter. Working within a character limit can actually encourage creativity and increase engagement!
Incorporate the basic elements of storytelling into your posts
If you’re not a natural storyteller, this information may seem complicated or hard to understand and implement. If you’re feeling a little unsure of your abilities, try breaking down your content into the basic elements of storytelling.
Relatable characters: Every good story has at least one relatable character with a distinct personality and varied interests. When you share stories on social media, make your brand that character! Don’t be afraid to talk about what makes you, your team, and your brand unique and interesting. Regularly shining a spotlight on you, your staff, your office, and your products and services is a great way to give your followers a “character” they find engaging.
Pacing: To tell a coherent story, you need to have the proper pacing. ABC happens, then LMNOP occurred, with XYZ as the result. Essentially, you want to make sure any story you tell has a clear beginning, middle, and end, so that it’s easy to follow.
Conflict and resolution: Stories are at their most compelling when they include some kind of conflict & resolution. The “conflict” can be as simple as a particularly challenging case you’ve successfully treated as the “resolution.” You could also share some of the difficulties you may have experienced and overcome in completing school or training, or in building a new office or opening a new practice.
However, you choose to incorporate storytelling into your content, work towards making your brand relatable, interesting, and worth sticking around for. If you find yourself stuck for ideas or unsure how to execute a story successfully on your social media, just let us know! The Neon Canvas team has a great deal of experience in creating vibrant, engaging stories that our clients – and their followers – love. We’d love to give you a creative boost, or even provide some extra encouragement when needed. We’re also always available to answer any questions, address any concerns, and listen to any suggestions you may have. We appreciate you and your business, and look forward to all the stories you’ll soon be sharing!
Kyle Fagala, DDS, MDS
Co-Founder, Neon Canvas