Grimm The Dawn Of The Narrator


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GRIMM, a manifesto for a new way of brand storytelling

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Grimm The Dawn Of The Narrator

  1. 1. GRIMM A manifesto in words
  2. 2. The dawn of the narrator A projection of the future
  3. 3. In short
  4. 4. Brand storytelling
  5. 5. Brand storytelling = People Constructing and propagating their own brand reality
  6. 6. Multidisciplinary story constructing Transmedial narration
  7. 7. The best way to build a brand
  8. 8. GRIMM
  9. 9. The whole story
  10. 10. Aboriginal story trail
  11. 11. Back to basics
  12. 12. What does a brand do and why? <ul><li>Representation of a product or service </li></ul><ul><ul><li>to give meaning, simplify choice, create preference, distnguish and sell more products </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Representation can be molded into different forms </li></ul><ul><li>Gives companies a way to express themselves by creating a world around themselves </li></ul><ul><li>This world is set to tell everybody the best story about the company they possibly can </li></ul><ul><li>By doing so they try to manage the way people see them </li></ul>
  13. 13. So branding is about telling stories
  14. 14. How is this story told? <ul><li>In the perfect world: In everything the company does </li></ul><ul><li>But the most important chapters are written in advertising </li></ul><ul><li>Each chapter is a campaign based on something – an idea -that’s quintessential for what the brand is about at that time </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Products they make, a vision they have </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Each campaign is meant to give people the essence of the brand </li></ul><ul><ul><li>told in different formats </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Each campaign is a – compact, sticky, meaningful and differentiating – representation of the brand </li></ul>
  15. 15. So advertising campaigns are means to tell the brand story
  16. 16. Advertising agencies are the narrators <ul><li>They strip the brand message to the core - the big idea </li></ul><ul><li>which gives people the essence </li></ul><ul><li>And the distinctiveness </li></ul><ul><li>The way the brand brings meaning to their lives </li></ul><ul><li>and shows how the brand gives them what they need </li></ul><ul><li>Functional In terms of products and services </li></ul><ul><li>But also symbolic associations to express themselves with </li></ul>
  17. 17. And media are the carriers of the story <ul><li>The story is told in ways people receive them best </li></ul><ul><li>Dependent of the possibilities and limitations of the media landscape present </li></ul><ul><ul><li>In terms of accessibility </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Is determined greatly by the state of current technology (which channels are there, and what is the penetration) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>But also by preference </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>What is people’s preferred media consumption (for a certain purpose) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>This has to be matched with the nature of the story that is to be told </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Text, audio, visual images required? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>And the budget that is available to tell the story </li></ul>
  18. 18. So far so good
  19. 19. The world is evolving <ul><li>Brands are used to be the directors of their brand story </li></ul><ul><li>commercial communication is most common for brands to do this </li></ul><ul><li>brands want to be in control and shape the world for their consumers </li></ul><ul><li>But due to technological and cultural developments this reality is changing </li></ul><ul><li>people are more and more in control of where, how and when they get their news, information and entertainment </li></ul><ul><li>The footprint brands leave and the impression they make is less dominated by their own commercial communication and more by outside influences (they don’t control) </li></ul>
  20. 20. What we see is <ul><li>Fragmentation of audiences </li></ul><ul><li>Abundance of available channels </li></ul><ul><li>Marketing savvy consumers </li></ul><ul><li>Growing Change in information processing (continuous partial attention) </li></ul><ul><li>Internet is becoming a key life line </li></ul><ul><li>Digitization of content </li></ul><ul><li>Rise of the Community (as a way of life) </li></ul><ul><li>interaction </li></ul><ul><li>Decreasing impact of traditional brand campaigns and channels </li></ul><ul><li>In general: Loss of control of constructing the brand story </li></ul>
  21. 21. Oh oh
  22. 22. So People are changing <ul><li>Are in more control of information consumption </li></ul><ul><li>Construct brand truth more and more independently of brand communications </li></ul><ul><li>Have access to more and different sources (and technology) </li></ul><ul><li>Are more critical towards commercial communication </li></ul><ul><li>Want to have more influence and interact with a message (even construct their own content) instead of being regarded only as a pair of available eyeballs </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid and loathe disruptive advertising </li></ul>
  23. 23. Evolution or revolution?
  24. 24. Both <ul><li>The evolution we are witnessing is progressing slowly </li></ul><ul><li>The majority is changing slowly (and remain the massive passive), but they are changing </li></ul><ul><li>Young people under 25 show revolutionary change – they are used to shaping and controlling their (brand) (media) experiences completely and show active consumption (up to content creation) </li></ul><ul><li>They consume media very differently from other age groups </li></ul><ul><ul><li>use media simultaneously and combine them in use, hereby constructing their own mediascapes (alone and together) </li></ul></ul>
  25. 25. Prepare for the future <ul><li>Their information processing is completely different </li></ul><ul><li>They are able and used to construct meaning from complex information dispersion (are able to find and connect pieces of information) </li></ul><ul><li>Next to the information you provide they will seek, share and construct their own information </li></ul><ul><li>Complex Information or Storylines provide a challenge and are considered very agreeable </li></ul><ul><li>They Enjoy this way of interacting with information (ARG, GTA, Lost) </li></ul><ul><li>Brand stories (and campaigns) must begin to meet this way of information processing (for it is the future) </li></ul>
  26. 26. However… <ul><li>A lot of parties involved claim to be the messiah to help brands in their hour of need </li></ul><ul><li>But reality is, they are all struggling and failing to provide a structural adequate solution </li></ul><ul><li>Time for a way of working designed for the 21 st century </li></ul><ul><li>Time for GRIMM </li></ul>
  27. 27. What is changing? <ul><li>A lot and at the same time not so much </li></ul><ul><li>The essence of communications remains the same, but circumstances and contexts evolve (as they always have) </li></ul><ul><li>So we need to analyze, evaluate the world and our role in it in order to restructure, set new course and evolve with the changes </li></ul><ul><li>New times ask for adaptation to change </li></ul><ul><li>We need to re-evaluate the way we look at commercial communication and how we build campaigns </li></ul><ul><li>We need to earn attention instead of interrupting it </li></ul>
  28. 28. Don’t lose sight <ul><li>Don’t panic….breathe…. And please, Don’t mix up means and ends </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Being interactive, or 360 degrees, is not a goal or a law (it is a (good) option) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Our good old TVC still has value, but is has to be asserted differently </li></ul></ul><ul><li>It’s what you tell in a brand story and how you can tell it best – that is what you must figure out </li></ul><ul><li>And how you enable people to construct their own brand experience or brand story </li></ul><ul><li>The big idea (the brand story) remains the focus point </li></ul><ul><li>The way you can (and must) express this story changes </li></ul>
  29. 29. brand storytelling remains key… but how we do this has to change
  30. 30. You plant the seeds, they grow the crops Stories that unfold across different platforms
  31. 31. GRIMM Storytelling; 21 st century style
  32. 32. The ingredients <ul><li>Who are you ? </li></ul><ul><li>What do you do? </li></ul><ul><li>What’s your story? </li></ul><ul><li>Who is/are your audience(s)? </li></ul><ul><li>How should we let our story be constructed? </li></ul><ul><li>How do we let the story to become their story </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Anchored </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>sticky </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>telling itself - shared - passed on </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>evolving </li></ul></ul>
  33. 33. First things first The brand story
  34. 34. Why is it important to tell a story? <ul><li>People need stories to get better understanding of the world and their place in the world </li></ul><ul><li>A great corporate story exceeds the facts and makes people want to bond with a brand. It brings an extra personal layer over a company’s products and services portfolio </li></ul><ul><li>Mission, vision and messages derived from a great corporate story have higher stickiness and attraction </li></ul><ul><li>Today people are more able to compare product facts and qualities. In the case of technological products fysical qualities become less distinctive </li></ul><ul><li>Brands can separate themselves by having a distinctive emotional story; a world around the product that goes beyond rational facts </li></ul>
  35. 35. What makes a good story? <ul><li>The Core </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Why does the brand exist/what does it do? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>One sentence….. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Construction workers; do they lay bricks or do they build a beautiful building? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The Myth </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Embodies the core </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Employee myth, ceo myth, big bang myth, milestone myth, product myth, customer myth </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>An anecdotical story to illustrate the core </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Collect them – select them – design them – spread them </li></ul>
  36. 36. Elements of a good story <ul><li>The Message </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Destilated from the core story – the substory </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Without a strong, clear, simple and familiar message there’s nothiong to tell </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Technological, soft filosophy, rebellious attitude </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>The Conflict </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The engine of any good story – will cause a sense of urgency, will lead to people’s attention (e.g. Al Gore) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Disrupted harmony, people have a natural tendency to restore the balance </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>The Cast </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The hero (of course with special qualities), the opponent (without opponent no conflict, without conflict no fascinating story, without….), the protoganists </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The Plot </li></ul><ul><ul><li>There’s a beginning, middle and end to a story full of threats and set backs, development but always with hope of a positive ending. People have to be involved and updated along the way – so what’s the scenario </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The Context </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The story exists in a dynamic context – circumstances changes, criteria alter </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Will the story hold and be relevant if a new market player enters the field, will it still be attractive? </li></ul></ul></ul>
  37. 37. Start writing your brand story
  38. 38. How to get the ink to the paper <ul><li>Dedicate some time </li></ul><ul><li>Take some days and spend it together to write the story </li></ul><ul><ul><li>strategy – creatives – clients </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Gather what you already know </li></ul><ul><li>Invite people from the outside for their side of the story </li></ul><ul><ul><li>consumers, former employers, the founding father, competitors, market analyzers, journalists </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Gather anecdotes </li></ul><ul><li>Analyse all the elements </li></ul><ul><li>Write an attractive story in detail </li></ul>
  39. 39. Who’s there to listen? The audience
  40. 40. What do we know of them? <ul><li>Is it one homogeneous group, or do they need to be segmented? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Socio-demographic data </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Psychographic data </li></ul></ul><ul><li>what do they do all day? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>How, why, with whom? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>What media do they use? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>How, how often, for what purpose? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>How do they communicate </li></ul><ul><ul><li>With whom, how, why </li></ul></ul><ul><li>What do they find interesting? </li></ul><ul><li>What is their relation to the brand or the category? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Purchasing funnel </li></ul></ul>
  41. 41. How do we get to know them?
  42. 42. Spend some time with them <ul><li>Analyze quantitative data to cast them, but most important </li></ul><ul><li>Observe them in their natural habitats (follow them around or let them capture their own lives) – ethnographic research </li></ul><ul><li>See how they look, what they do, how they do this, and ask them why </li></ul><ul><li>Talk to them - Ask them stuff </li></ul><ul><li>Alone and together </li></ul><ul><li>Know how they interact </li></ul><ul><li>Do some serious method acting </li></ul>
  43. 43. How to tell the story? The channels
  44. 44. Channels selector <ul><li>Now you have: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>A certain story to tell (sub-stories, components, length, complexity) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>A group of people to tell it to (profile, specifics, idiosynchrancies ) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>A pallet of communication vehicles to choose from (qualities, specifics, costs) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>From this we can distill a communication concept (brand storybook) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Which channels, how will these interact </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The way we are going to tell the story across different platforms </li></ul><ul><li>The way we will seed additional elements of the story for people to use (create a context) </li></ul><ul><li>The way we can enable people to contruct their own brand story and share it </li></ul><ul><li>How to go about? </li></ul>
  45. 45. Transmedia storytelling (engagement planning)
  46. 46. <ul><li>In an era of convergence, consumers become hunters and gatherers pulling </li></ul><ul><li>together information from multiple sources to form a new synthesis. </li></ul><ul><li>Storytellers begin to exploit this potential for transmedia storytelling; </li></ul><ul><li>advertisers began to talk about branding as depending upon multiple touch </li></ul><ul><li>points; networks seek to exploit their intellectual properties across many </li></ul><ul><li>Different channels. </li></ul><ul><li>Transmedia stories at the most basic level are stories told across multiple media. </li></ul><ul><li>At the present time, the most significant stories tend to flow across multiple </li></ul><ul><li>Media platforms; the same can be said for the most significant social activities. </li></ul><ul><li>This dispersal of information represents one important source of complexity in </li></ul><ul><li>Contemporary popular culture. </li></ul><ul><li>Multiple media platforms </li></ul><ul><li>Social interaction </li></ul><ul><li>Build on story </li></ul><ul><li>Construct own (brand) story </li></ul>What does wikipedia say?
  47. 47. It’s more then media neutral planning <ul><li>The same philosophy applies because both use one strong brand story which iterates itself across a series of touch points </li></ul><ul><li>But Transmedia planning is more adequate for the 21 st century because </li></ul><ul><ul><li>It provides An evolving non-linear brand narrative </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>With Different channels expressing different parts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Where Consumers pull the parts together themselves </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>And is Designed to generate brand communities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Where Consumers share elements </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>And construct and contribute to the story </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Making the brand story more sticky and more attractive to spread amongst themselves (Word of mouth) </li></ul></ul>
  48. 48. Transmedia storytelling Source:
  49. 49. GRIMM Storytelling; 21 st century style
  50. 50. What is GRIMM? <ul><li>An different way of looking at branding </li></ul><ul><li>A way to deal with current situation and the (near) future </li></ul><ul><li>the designer, director and enabler of modern brand stories </li></ul><ul><li>A branding philosophy </li></ul><ul><li>And a dedicated way of working </li></ul>
  51. 51. All systems in place and set for true brand Engagement Context Involving Media Environment Content Relevant Creative Message (brand story) Consumer Interested and Willing
  52. 52. Who and what do we need? <ul><li>Storytellers </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Brand Strategist </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Creative conceptors (storytellers in both images and words) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>channel connoisseurs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>client </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Input </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Research (quantitative, qualitative) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ethnographic experts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>insight specialist/trend researcher </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Third parties (knowledge, inspiration > different perspective) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Time and dedication </li></ul><ul><ul><li>To create the best story we can </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>And the best way to tell it </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>In order for it to spread and evolve </li></ul></ul>
  53. 53. GRIMM Author: Geert-Jan Baltus E-mail: [email_address] Mob: +31(0)621548313 August 4 th 2008