Storytelling is all the rage right now in the content marketing world. It was also the subject of discussion at Content Marketing World 2014 where Kevin Spacey did the keynote… on storytelling. Mr. Spacey walked through the three elements of great storytelling. I've added my own remarks here – you can watch the video of his keynote (which was carefully edited to cut out quite a collection of expletives).
- Conflict – Your business may not be a solution to anything as colorful as a Kevin Spacey script, but there are conflicts that you're trying to solve. You are the solution to a problem and every problem is a conflict. It may be a conflict of identifying efficiency, of pursuing happiness, of accurately analyzing information. Share the conflict with your audience!
- Authenticity – social media is a key piece of the authenticity of storytelling in the marketing world. You have the opportunity to provide use cases, testimonials, employees, and – of course – your own personality to craft the story and tell it amazingly well. Stories without characters suck… think about that!
- Audience – who are you reaching, where are they, and how are you reaching them? Are you telling your story in the mediums they consume? Are you telling your story in the places they frequent? Are you crafting the story in a manner which emotionally connects with them? Knowing your audience will help you fine-tune your story!
Perhaps the most important thing Mr. Spacey said in closing, was this:
And remember… it's the risk-takers that are rewarded.
The stories that stand out are the ones that are different, the ones that capture attention, the ones that emotionally connect, the ones that are shareworthy. Is that the story that you're producing?