iStrategy Melbourne - Let Me Tell You a Story: Content is the Word - Joe Smith, BlueArc


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In the beginning there was the word… then the internet… and now the word again.

Whatever your product or service, you need to be in the business of telling great stories. It’s not optional, it’s essential. Tweeting, blogging, websites and any number of other digital delivery methods ARE optional. Creating content that tells powerfully persuasive stories that shape customer behaviour and captures users’ hearts and minds needs to be your brand’s top priority.

Our workshop will introduce you to the basic tenets of great storytelling for digital audiences. You’ll learn what makes a great message and get tools and tips for shaping your own. You’ll get a new perspective on your old words and understand how to make them work harder for an audience with ever diminishing attention spans and an over abundance of content choices.

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  • When it comes to engaging with customers and leading them towards buying from you, there is one secret weapon that is often overlooked in the world of business - the humble the world of business, many elements of story-telling have given way to keyword-laden web pages, meta tags, and 140-character Tweets.
  • The human animal is a narrative animal. We are made of stories.  We speak them, understand them, remember them, and live them.We pay to read them, watch them in movies theatres and at home.Stories have served us for thousands of yearsExplaining , Remembering, Understanding:Creation stories explained the world:This country was flat until The Rainbow Serpent, Goorialla, went looking for his own tribe and in his journeying North he created the creeks and rivers and helping indigenous people record the location of resources like water.Religious stories explained the unexplainable:The question: what comes after death has been explained via lots of storiesWhat’s critical to understand is that that explanation replaced Fear and anxiety of the unknown with confidence and a sense of control.Afterlife stories explain not just the unknown, and it’s benefits, but the features of how to behave to receive the benefits.This is the key to improving your marketing stories: features AND benefits
  • Stretch: yes, it’s stretching it a bit – drawing a very low bow – stories refers to lots of different types of narrative. We’re not focussing on characterisation, plot and genre. Today is not about literary construct.Disorientate:An attempt to disorientate the rationale thinkers and to promote a more emotional approach to brand messaging.
  • Communicating in business has become a series of short staccato bursts and we've lost much of the power that the narrative flow in a story can provide. Messages that end with "Sent from my iPhone" or "Sent from my Blackberry" are an excuse for the sender to write curt responses with little context or explanation.But stories - the right stories - can influence your customers. They can build a fan base. They can be the difference between "yes" and "no". So what kind of stories do I mean? 
  • The kind of stories I’m talking about describe a path from unwanted feeling to highly desired feeling via a product or services’ features.Let’s look at a path from a story that appeared in comic books during the 1940s
  • A Path that begins with the unwanted feeling: ShameTravels via: 15 minutes a day and something called “Dynamic Tension”Ends with: Fame and Control
  • Path from the unwanted feelings of Anxiety and FearVia new tires and Ford ServiceResulting in Control, Power and Confidence.
  • Path that takes you from your dull world featuring unimpressed friends to a Wonderful World of HappinessThis is particularly important because I’m putting forward the case that …
  • Facts:features that get you on the list: Feelings: emotional benefits that are boughtA car makes it easy to get from A to B, butA Porsche will make me appear powerful and I’ll feel like a rockstarThe air built into the sole of the sneaker might cushion my heels, but …Nike sneakers will impress my friends and I’ll feel coolBecause customers buy on emotion, you need to create feeling in your customers – an emotional connection & reaction to your product or service.And it is stories that tap into the heart of emotion.
  • I can help you feel competent about building emotional reactions to your products and services.It’s going to take empathy and work, that’s all.Let’s do a warm up
  • Vanity license plates are a lot like Twitter.  You’ve got a limited amount of space with which you must communicate an aspect of your story to all the people around you.Well done, good story telling.And we have arrived at one of the two major obstacles to good story telling:
  • Web based stories are our focus and they’re a little different.You can tell shorter, fragmented stories – you MUST be conciseIf they come to your site, they’re familiar with the basic story and are announcing themselves: “considering, prepared or ready to buy”
  • iStrategy Melbourne - Let Me Tell You a Story: Content is the Word - Joe Smith, BlueArc

    2. 2. Bluearc /9Story tellingCREATURESOF NARRATIVE• Explaining• Remembering• Understanding
    3. 3. Bluearc /9Story tellingWHY THETERM“STORIES”?• A bit of stretch• An attempt to disorientate• Emotional not rational
    4. 4. Bluearc /9Story tellingMARKETINGSTORIES &FLOW• Staccato bursts vs narrative flow• Pitch for more time• Get to “yes”
    5. 5. Bluearc /9 The problemStory telling TheMARKETING unwanted feeling you have nowSTORIES &FLOW The features:
    6. 6. Bluearc /9Story tellingATLAS
    7. 7. Bluearc /9Story tellingFORD
    8. 8. Bluearc /9Story tellingSEA-MONKEYS
    9. 9. Bluearc /9Story tellingPEOPLE BUYON EMOTION• Facts: features that get you on the list• Feelings: emotional benefits that are bought• Create feeling in your customer
    10. 10. Bluearc /9Story tellingTODAY’SSTORY• I can help you feel competent about building emotional reactions to your products and services.
    11. 11. Bluearc /9Story tellingACTIVITY ONE:PERSONALISED PLATES• Warm up• Concise• personal
    12. 12. Bluearc /9Story tellingMAJORBARRIERS• It’s all about you• It’s too easy to talk
    13. 13. Bluearc /9Story tellingACTIVITY TWO:FEATURES VS.BENEFITS• Where’s the story in this?• Show empathy• Hunt the benefits
    14. 14. Bluearc /9Story tellingWEBSITESTORIES• Unique platform• Concise, clear & with c.t.a.• Audience is primed
    15. 15. Bluearc /9Story tellingACTIVITY THREE:MORE BUILDINGBLOCKS• Target your audience• Unique features/solutions• Calls to action
    16. 16. Bluearc /9Story tellingACTIVITY FOUR:BUILDING YOURSTORY• Target your audience• Unique features/solutions• Calls to action