Clara Mathews

Captivate Your Audience: Use Storytelling in Your Content Marketing

Tell a storyFinding interesting topics for your blog and other content marketing materials can be a challenge. There are millions of pages of content on the Internet, but not all of them are compelling or even worth reading.

What is the key to creating content that reaches out and grabs the attention of your audience? Tell an interesting story.

What makes storytelling the key to creating compelling content?

From the beginning of time, mankind has caught the attention of others by telling a captivating story. We are hardwired to like stories.

  • Cavemen depicted a successful mammoth hunt in cave paintings
  • Egyptian hieroglyphics told the history of their civilization
  • Almost every country-western song ever sung tells a story

Think about some of the most popular television series. What makes people spend hours binge-watching entire seasons of shows like Breaking Bad? We are not only intrigued by the characters, but we can’t wait to see what happens next. The story has grabbed our attention.

What make NPR’s This American Life one of the most popular podcasts? It is because we want to hear Ira Glass tell us a different story every week.

Creative storytelling is not new in marketing. BMW used a series of commercials and a webisode, The Driver starring Clive Owen, to show the adventurous side of owning a luxury sedan. Nike’s “Just Do It” campaign shows the joys and challenges of pursuing athletic dreams. There are many examples, but in each the brand tells a story that captivates the audience.

How to incorporate storytelling into your content marketing

Your marketing team has spent hours and hours creating buyer personas that will help you understand the motivations of your ideal customers. The stories you tell about your brand can be intriguing, humorous or informative, as long as they connect on a personal, even intimate level, with your audience.

Use the buyer personas to create a well-thought out content strategy that includes storytelling.

Three basic storytelling narratives

  1. Epic adventure or hero’s journey
  2. Love story or boy meets girl
  3. Parable or morale tale

In each of these narrative archetypes there are unlimited stories to be told. And in each you can include your ideal customer in the lead role of the narrative.

How does storytelling relate to your specific product or service?

Instead of listing the same old features and benefits, think of ways you can provide a solution for your ideal customer.

  • Can you help a busy mom save time with your prepackaged sliced apples?
  • Does your new app help an entrepreneur get control of his overstuffed email inbox?
  • Will your marketing strategy help sell more of the client’s product?

Use creative ways to show examples of the customer experience that create a personal connection with your brand. In addition to blog posts, you can use podcasts, video, case studies and infographics as a medium for storytelling.

Are you using storytelling to promote your brand? If so, how? If not, share below some ideas you are going implement after reading this post.

Clara Mathews

Clara Mathews is the owner of Clarabela Media. She is a Content Marketing Strategist, Copywriter & Social Media Manager. She lives in Dallas with her sock-stealing terrier, Huckleberry.

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