Using Digital Storytelling to make a Connection

From the stories told during campfires to the fairy tales mums tell their children during bedtime or even to the light banter shared by co-workers during break time, it is no understatement to say that people are drawn to stories.

Storytelling is an integral aspect of being human – being curious about other people and knowing that one’s experiences are akin to the experiences of others. Stories enable both the speaker and the listener to establish a connection.

Digital storytelling is no different. Indeed, today’s storytellers have a wide array of tools to make their narratives more compelling to listen to, including pictures, videos and other online platforms. But at its heart, this type of storytelling is about sharing a narrative — of establishing a connection.

Although using digital elements to tell a more compelling narrative is widely used in the education sector, businesses can profit greatly from using this tool to make a connection with their audiences and promote their brands. Specifically, this type of storytelling can be used in your business’s social media efforts. Here are a few ways to do that.

Showcase the human side of your brand

With the prevalence of the Internet, the shift in consumer behaviour has been noticeable. Instead of connecting to brands, more and more people are drawn to the personal aspect of a company. And if you want to opt for that route, to make your brand truly resonate with your target audience, you need to tell your story. This may include telling your audience what you are doing or offering them a behind-the-scenes look at your processes.

You can even use your website, blog and social media accounts to share what your brand’s story is and what the things you stand for are.

Use social media updates to tell a narrative

With your social media accounts, you already have a captive audience that is ready and willing to listen to your stories. Use these platforms to share your brand’s stories and keep your audience engaged by listening and answering to their comments.

For platforms like Twitter that have shorter character counts, you can use consecutive posts.

What makes a story a story

Good stories share a few key elements and it is a good idea to have a clear picture of what these are and to use these in telling yours.

First, your story should have characters that your audience can relate to. With your brand as the primary character of your narrative, you have to frame it in such a way that it has a unique personality. It would also be helpful to add to your cast of characters actual people in your organisation.

Stories also have a structure: the beginning, the middle and the end. Use this to pace your story.

What actually draws people to a story is conflict, so be sure to infuse this element. It can be as simple as detailing the challenges you faced in developing a product.

Consider how you can use the technology you already own to tell your story. DigiEnable has worked with Councils, Libraries and various community organisations to develop their stories using mobile devices, the authenticity can often be what makes it most effective.

So, why not have a go at telling a story, you could be surprised by your customers response.

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