If you want to make a mark for your business and turbocharge your consumer engagement rate, upgrading your company’s storytelling strategy is imperative. Storytelling is changing. It’s no longer enough to write blog posts on LinkedIn or post content on social media platforms. How companies create brand stories is being disrupted, as is the manner in which customers consume brand content. Understanding where the future of storytelling is heading should be job #1 for brand marketers. If you want a sneak peek into the future of storytelling, incorporate thefollowing seven tips into your business’ brand development strategy.
Collaborative storytelling is in its infancy. Using the power of the crowd to create collaborative brand stories will continue to flourish as more companies realize the potential of group-think for brand outreach. There are already a number of startup companies being built around the concept of collaborative storytelling and knowledge gathering including kipwise.com, reason8.ai, and storyappy.com. If your business wants to become a thought leader in the world of digital marketing, the time is now to start developing a collaborative storytelling strategy for your brand.
Interactive storytelling will continue to be hot in the future. Interactive storytelling includes everything from quizzes on Facebook to multiple choice audience inputs that change the direction of a story. When you integrate interactive storytelling into your brand strategy, you improve your odds of increased audience engagement. “Potential customers are much more likely to have an affinity for your brand when they’ve participated directly with your company’s outreach efforts instead of just being passive consumers of your content,” suggested the founder of Metropolitan Public Strategies, Neal Kwatra.
To say podcasts are hot as a storytelling medium would be the understatement of the year. Brands are realizing how powerful podcasts are for connecting with consumers and are incorporating podcasting into their company’s overall digital marketing strategy. Look on iTunes or Google Play for the phrase ‘create your own podcast’ and you’ll be met with a myriad of options for creating your business’ own podcast. If you do decide to utilize podcasting as an integral part of your content marketing efforts, be sure to poll your target audience beforehand to make sure you’re creating podcast content consumers actually want to listen to. Use a tool like ListenNotes.com to find popular podcasts within your market sector for a better understanding of which types of podcasts are resonating with audiences.
Serial storytelling is another media marketing tool sure to be popular in the future. Companies are already learning the power of serial storytelling and are using continuing story series to keep consumers coming back. Look no further than Netflix for multiple examples of serials popular with consumers. If your brand can hook consumers with engaging serial storytelling, they’ll keep coming back to your brand or even binge on your content all in one sitting.
Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality Storytelling
One of the hottest storytelling trends in the future will be augmented reality and virtual reality stories. Companies already have multiple tools at their disposal to include augmented/virtual reality components in their stories and are using these add-on features to stand out from competitors. If you want to get out ahead of this storytelling trend, the time is now to start searching for AR and VR tools to help take your digital marketing strategy to the next level.
Storytelling isn’t just about stories you tell on your business’ blog, LinkedIn page, or on social media. Storytelling can also include messaging outreach on your brand’s packaging, customer receipts, or even in-store messaging. Expect to see an increase in branded storytelling in innovative ways as companies attempt to win the eyes and ears of their target customers. From the labels they put on their products to the fixtures that hold their products, each interaction with a consumer is an opportunity to tell a brand’s story.
Instant Messaging Storytelling
One of the most underutilized forms of storytelling is instant messaging storytelling. With many consumers having instant access to a smartphone, telling brand stories via instant messaging/text messaging is a no-brainer. The critical component is getting consumers to opt into your text messaging storytelling, using social proof to do so. The more you can get a consumer’s peers to opt into your instant messaging storytelling, the greater your chances are of increasing your IM subscriber rate. As consumers become more distracted with their busy lives, spending time reading a long blog post is likely to lose out to more instant forms of brand messaging. Hopping aboard the instant messaging storytelling train before your competitors is likely to be a savvy digital marketing move.
These seven tips give you a clear indication as to where brand storytelling is heading. The sooner you upgrade your business’ storytelling strategy to include these trends, the sooner you’ll build a stronger digital footprint for your brand.