It’s hard to believe that bright-eyed little youngsters are getting ready to start school once again. Can you remember the way your classroom smelled those first few days back? Ah, nostalgia. Wouldn’t it be nice if there was some kind of immersive experience that could really make you feel like you were back in those hallowed halls of learning? Oh, wait, there is (or at least that’s the direction we’re going). As we review in this week’s Friday Fix, our run-down of the week in content marketing news, immersive storytelling is trending as is video storytelling. We also look into some big changes taking place at Instagram as well as the necessity of providing your audience with quality content. So, grab a nice cold brew (because it’s hot out there!) and get ready for your Friday Fix!
The image-driven social media platform Instagram is turning a new page with Instagram Stories, a platform highly-similar to Snapchat in terms of the frequency, immediacy, and candidness of content. In this piece, Kyle Wong explores the broader ramifications of this shift toward “raw” image-based content, toward embracing user content, and toward changing the approach to projecting the brand’s image. In short, instead of putting one’s best face forward, Instagram Stories wants you to put your most authentic face forward.
Greg Satell starts this piece by remembering a few popular brand slogans that –while still memorable—simply won’t do anymore. Why? Because the goal is to create experiences…not just craft messages. How do you create experiences? Though storytelling. “Content is crap,” says Greg explaining that no one ever has walked out of a fantastic movie and declared, “Wow! What great content!” Well-played, Greg. Additionally, a veritable font of storytelling wisdom, Greg expands on truths like that if the ending to the story is obvious, then it’s pointless to tell the story, that great stories don’t start out that way, and that consistency and surprise are essential for great storytellers.
It’s a reasonable bet that there’s more content out there than there are fish in the sea, and standing out as yet another hayseed in a haystack can seem impossible. Shabana Arora points out that if you create something truly smart or clever, you might be quoted, but if you make your audience laugh, you’ll be memorable, and being memorable is what’s going to make a difference. Of course, failed attempts at humor can make you memorable for the wrong reasons, so it’s necessary to learn the rules of injecting humor the right way.
All right, all right...we know that you know that there are major merits to visual storytelling…you don’t have to draw a picture for us (wink); however, analyzing storytelling and visual storytelling is such a multifaceted process and is one that storytellers have been doing for centuries. Hence, in this article, Angela Hausman, PhD., details the four underpinning principles of visual storytelling: authenticity, archetype, sensory, and relevancy.
We’ve all heard the news that image-based storytelling, specifically video, is where it’s at these days. In this piece, Adam Rowe gets into the details noting that for nearly 60% of media executives who are hiring cited “visual storytelling and editing” as a major priority. While you may not be looking for a job, you might be looking to refine your video storytelling skills, which Adam details in this piece from programs to work with to strategies for creating narrative with video.
In case you haven’t heard, let Mehroz Khan blow the lid off this one: videos on Instagram can now be 60 seconds in length versus the previous 15 seconds. Okay, you might say, but I’ve been able to create 60-second videos for (insert platform here) for (insert time frame here). Well, Instagram is different. In this piece, Mehroz details precisely how Instagram is unique, why you should be jazzed, and how to leverage your newfound superpowers for your brand’s benefit.
Our minds are strange and interesting place; if you’ve ever done any studies on how the brain interprets things, you’ll know that our minds contribute to what we process. For example, in Nicola Brown’s piece, she has one of those images where you see black and white dots (except that there aren’t black dots) because our minds “fill in the blanks” for the missing information. Okay, so why does this matter? It matters because to create content for the future, it’s essential that we understand how our minds interpret immersive content and how to address that.
In this article, MVP content marketing pundit Jayson DeMers tackles 2016’s top seven trends. He reveals several interesting things like the significant decline of organic reach, the voracity for which interactive content is being demanded, and the vastness of the widening quality gap, as well as some obvious things like the meteoric rise of video content’s popularity. Check out Jayson’s article for the other three trends and the specifics on all seven.
Remember when content marketing was characterized by the ability to create a lot of content? Remember when that stopped being the case because now it’s all about lots of connections, various content formats and multiple channels? In this piece, Nick Colakovic dishes on what one must do in order to be on top of today’s content marketing game. For example, content needs to be personal and creative without being jammed with SEO (some SEO is okay, but….), and interactions and storytelling need to be focal points, among other things.
Lob the question of how long content articles should be to a group of content marketers, and it’s a safe bet that you’ll get at least 10 different answers. Here, John Miller endeavors to address the question. So, spoiler alert: there’s no right answer (I know, the Hermione Granger in all us just died a little), but there is an answer, which is that is depends on what you have to say and how much space you need to say it because the goal is to tell a story. Okay, there are a few more details than that, but thankfully John has the answers to sort them out.
Just as an actor might ask, “What’s my motivation?” you should likewise ask what your goal is for creating content. In the case of content marketers, the lead generation is the aim of creating and sharing content with audiences via blogs, social media, and websites; however, for this content to be useful and sharable, the content should cater toward the individual platform on which it’s going to be shared while providing useful information for the audience.
Looking to increase your brand’s reach or to engage your audience in a meaningful way? Contact us at The Storyteller Agency and let us help you show rather than tell your audience who you are and what you do.