"Australians are known for our generous nature, which has given rise to a robust and diverse giving sector. We’re also characterised by our love of a good yarn – we like telling and hearing stories. It’s no surprise then, that storytelling is an incredibly effective means of communicating key messages for organisations and individuals, particularly in the charitable space.
The power of storytelling cannot be understated, and mustn’t be confused with mere ‘reporting’.
While facts, figures and reporting on impact are important, it’s the stories – and the right people to tell them – that are the most important components of any communications toolkit."
Read the full article to find out more about these five tips for collecting and sharing stories:
Search far and wide for the right storyteller for you
"The best way to build trust? Go from ‘someone they don’t know’ to ‘someone they know.’ Create connection through your stories, the ones that deliver your key messages. Develop your stories, the journeys that reveal your team’s challenges, values, and assets. Show some vulnerability (a key variable in developing trust) in your stories, and reveal the changes your team members have brought to life. Become known. Your candidates have to see the vision for a new life that you’re representing – and why they should become a part of it. Have a rich set of stories to deliver an authentic sense of culture, connection, and opportunity."
Read the full article to find out more about these three types of stories for talent leaders:
Kim Zinke (aka Gimli Goose)'s insight:
With a collection of these three types of stories that you can pull out at will, your connection with candidates will be stronger, trust will be established more quickly, and you’ll be a greater asset to the team that you serve.
"To become a better presenter and leader, step away from the computer, get out of the office, and read one of these 9 books.
If you are like me, and you are feeling inspired to challenge and transform yourself, consider reading one of the books below while sitting in one of your favorite spots outside. These 9 books were selected because they offer insights that can help you refine and elevate your presentation skills."
Read the full article to read the summaries of these books and find out how they'll help you with your presentations and storytelling skills:
Infographics: The Power of Visual Storytelling
Stories that Move Mountains: Storytelling and Visual Design for Persuasive Presentations
The Art of Explanation: Making your Ideas, Products, and Services Easier to Understand
Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action
Lead with a Story: A Guide to Crafting Business Narratives That Captivate, Convince, and Inspire
To Sell Is Human: The Surprising Truth About Moving Others
"A few weeks ago, I attended “frank 2015,” a gathering for folks who use storytelling and other forms of communications for social change. The event is named for the late Frank Karel, a revered communications leader at the Robert Wood Johnson and Rockefeller Foundations.
Here’s a quick tour of some things I learned – what I want to remember as our team at Encore.org works to tell new stories and build a movement around “second acts for the greater good.”"
Read the full article to find out more about these seven tips and links to the related sessions:
"You’re sitting on the runway, squashed between two strangers. “Folks, we’re number 32 in queue for takeoff.” Collective groan. May as well get cozy with your neighbors. And that’s okay, because your neighbors probably have a story to share. In fact, everyone has a story. You, as the Story Sleuth, have a job to find out what that is.
If you’re reading this blog, you already know how important fundraising stories are. But here’s what many people don’t know: Good nonprofit stories can be incredibly difficult to get. Great nonprofit stories often require fieldwork — going out into shelters, soup kitchens, hospitals, or wherever a nonprofit does good work."
Read the full article to find out more about these practical tips to keep in mind when you get there:
Look for people who actually want to share their story
"Your mission to discover the beating heart of your business, your authentic brand story, just got easier. And we all know how important finding this narrative is.
Edgar gives you the Detective Brand Story Canvas, a simple yet powerful visual canvas that helps you ask the right questions about your brand. Each question is quite straightforward, so it leads your attention with the power of a laser focus to the various aspects of your story."
Read the full article to view the infographic and find out how to unravel the mystery of your story by looking at the:
"Authentic stories help powerful brands make deep connections with customers. But that high-level principle creates real-world challenges for content marketers. What is a powerful story and how do you tell it?"
Read the full article to see examples and find out more about these four tips on how to tell stories that make connections and get results:
"Some brands are inherently sexy, like the Ford Mustang. The name evokes an immediate feeling of caution-to-the-wind youth and speed. Even though it’s been around for ages, Ford does a pretty good job of keeping the Mustang image fresh and current. There’s a lot of material to work with: history, style, engineering, innovation (not to mention that it’s a sports car).
Sadly, we don’t all write content for Ford’s Mustang. Most brands are pretty darn boring. Marketers are called on to create compelling stories for things like toilet paper or tile grout and for companies that rent out heavy equipment or manufacture parts that go inside other products.
How do you work with that? And how do you convince an old-school CEO that the company’s story is worth telling? Creating a great story means digging right into the heart of what makes a company or a product special."
Read the full article to see some examples of brands big and small making it happen and how they fit into these categories:
"Every year on February 26th, Tell a Fairy Tale Day celebrates the art of storytelling. Though you may not read traditional fairy tales very often any more, chances are that many of the story threads throughout your favorite books and movies have their roots in fairy tales."
Read the full article to find out more about these six ways to have fun with storytelling on Tell a Fairy Tale Day:
Fairy tales aren't just for kids. The stories adults and organizations tell are often heavily influenced by them. Try some of the techniques noted above and see which tale resonates with your story or if they prompt some new stories.
"Over the past eight years, I’ve read more than 100 books on storytelling, persuasion, copywriting, content marketing, and designing presentations. From Edward Tufte’s books on information design to Joseph Campbell’s The Hero’s Journey, to the neuroscience behind storytelling. This year, I've compiled the top 26 books that I think every leader, communicator, thought leader and business owner should read.
If you want to up your game and grow your business, elevate your platform, or become a better storyteller — read these books."
Read the full article to discover the storytelling books in this list. You'll find 14 recommendations under the categories:
"Turn the ancient expression of storytelling into an engaging task for your 21st century students by adding a media component. Called digital storytelling, this “is the practice of combining narrative with digital content, including images, sound, and video, to create a short movie, typically with a strong emotional component.” Not only does this help bring your classroom into the new age of educational technology, but it gets kids excited about writing and sharing their work."
Introduce digital storytelling with these nine simple steps:
Show the Final Product First
Encourage Purposeful Writing
Don’t Forget the Editing Process
Help Students Write Their Plan
Include a Lesson About Copyright and Media Use
Explore New Technology
Help Students Create Their Narration
Kim Zinke (aka Gimli Goose)'s insight:
A good way to introduce any age to digital storytelling.
"When reorienting a brand and clarifying their core reason for being, companies are too often satisfied with a shallow exploration, settling on empty cliches when they should be seeking the real concept they’re sincere about and deeply committed to.
The Slippery Part of Finding the Untold Story. It’s because it’s so obvious to “everyone.”
But when you dig a bit deeper, you discover the “everyone” is made up of all those inside the company, those who breathe this stuff everyday. But those outside the company may never have heard your story. In other words, since it’s SO obvious to you, you no longer notice or talk about some of those subtleties that make you different. You take them for granted. You simply forget how different your company is compared to all the other choices your audience has."
Read the full article to find out more about:
the 3-step formula for fully defining a company’s untold story and unearth the human component
the case study of how a dance school, 29 years in business, rebranded and revitalized themselves by finding their untold stories
How do you redefine a brand after 25 years? American Dance Institute confronted this to give fresh new meaning to their brand. This case study shows how they found their untold story and the products produced to support it.
"In the last few years, brands have increasingly become publishers in their own right. Virgin adopted a publishing strategy a few years ago and when I joined the team back in 2013 my task was to set up a content stream dedicated to the power of entrepreneurial thinking to build a better world – the aim of the Virgin Group’s non-profit foundation, Virgin Unite.
Collectively, Virgin, Richard Branson and Virgin Unite have a reach of almost 25 million on social media – that’s a huge platform for change. We love to share the great work that the Virgin Group is doing around sustainability, but we also believe in sharing our platform with other people and organisations that are doing incredible and innovative things. We want to help other pioneers achieve their aims and that in turn makes for a richer experience for our audiences."
Read the full article to find out more about these lessons learned about storytelling for change:
Engage the whole organisation and beyond
Don’t be shy about being creative with how you communicate issues
Open up your platform(s) to other voices
Ask questions; don't just tell people what you think, or what they already know
Last but not least, never forget what makes people tick
"Creating good stories is how companies convince preoccupied, information-overloaded consumers there is something worth their time and interest. Whether a company’s stories engage, educate, or entertain, they encourage a consumer to pause, even if for a short time.
But here’s the key question: How do companies get started with storytelling? The answer: a five-step process that any company can embrace."
Read the full article to find out more about these 5 steps:
"No matter the tech, humans have invariably figured out a compelling way to tell each other stories.
That’s not to say we all tell stories the same way. Far from it. As Kay Turner, a folklorist and independent scholar who’s on the board of the New York Folklore Society, notes, “Even if a story is the same, each culture will tell it differently, because each one has its own genres and cultural rules.” That’s led to a host of different traditions and practices beloved around the world. Here are just some of them."
Read the full article to find out more about these storytelling traditions used across the globe:
"A friend wrote me asking for resources to find/discover/learn about interactive storytelling. I compiled my list of go-to links and sent her an email, but decided that it may be helpful for all of you too!
So below, I have listed out the sites that I like to go to for updates in interactive storytelling. There are certainly many more (add the ones you love in the comments section) but these are my favorites, and have a bit of a non-fiction slant to them."
Read the full article to access links to a number of interactive websites listed under the headings:
Discover projects through places that award & exhibit interactive media
Kim Zinke (aka Gimli Goose)'s insight:
Lots of examples and resources can be found on these sites.
"We all want to craft content pieces that engage our readers and give them something to talk about. Nonetheless, we are fully aware of the fact that our audiences are constantly bombarded with tons of attractive, informative and palatable content coming from different reputable sources.
In this context, we are desperately looking for the simplest, most concise answer to the following key questions: Why is it so important to work hard to exceed our own content creation efforts on a daily basis? How do we make our writing stand out from the crowd? And most importantly, what are the secret tricks and tips that we could apply to craft eye-catchy, memorable content with a real substance? Let’s find out."
Read the full article to find out more about these 10 ways to craft strikingly beautiful, high-value content:
Unleash the Power of Quality Storytelling
Create and Publish Shareable Images
Craft and Implement Attention-Grabbing 3D Pictures
Use Behind-the-Scene Pictures to Add a Sense of Authenticity to Your Writing
Add DIY Videos to Your Content Pieces
Master the Golden, Unwritten Rules of Text Editing
Rely on a Correct Journalistic Approach
Use the Right Font to Beautify Your Content
Always Write with Your Readers in Mind
Kim Zinke (aka Gimli Goose)'s insight:
By ditching useless adornments, using clear everyday language and a tone adapted to your audience, perfecting your storytelling skills and making the most of a broad category of visual aids, you will succeed in individualizing and beautifying your writing style. In-depth research, creativity, a deeper understanding of your audience, an ounce of talent and a manipulative ability to play with different powerful emotions are the main ingredients that allow you to go beyond existing aesthetic canons and craft truly original, outstanding content that will always keep your readers coming back for more.
""Jay! I'm working on my stories!" Said my friend Janie recently. Her three-year-old son was apparently asking for story after story - about 30 stories a day. At first, she said, it was exhausting, but she quickly started to learn some techniques. For example, she said, "I had to use similar stories for different purposes, to keep them fresh. Then I started using sensory details, and funny, enough, continued to learn again and again: The stories have to go somewhere."
And I'll tell you this is the same lesson I'm always learning: our stories, too, have to go somewhere. They have to take the audience along, through a journey of change, which shifts how the world works. And along the way, our stories don't just tell us what happened; our stories to tell us why it happened."
Read the full article to find out more about these storytelling techniques:
"My radio show is called ‘Story Powered™‘ and is a platform for talking about all things story. Every week, experts from around the world will share their expertise and experience in story powered leadership, branding and business development.
Story Powered will also help business leaders and entrepreneurs to think about the internal stories that are holding them back or affecting their success and learn how to create a new narrative that moves them closer to their goals and dreams."
Read the full article to follow along on this weekly radio show, or listen to or download the episodes.
Thanks to fellow curator @Karen Dietzfor finding this resource! She sums up what it's about really nicely in her review:
"Here's another fab resource for everyone interested in business storytelling. Story professional Lianne Picot has been interviewing some of the best minds in the storytelling field about how and why story works, applications for stories, and concrete how-to steps."
"Here we’d like to share a few of our favorite books. Some of these were written just for filmmakers, helping us understand how each technical decision affects our stories. Others take a more general approach, examining how human beings are wired to respond to narrative, and how you can craft your stories to better engage your audience."
Read the full article to find out more about why these 7 books that will help you to tell better stories:
The Storytelling Animal: How Stories Make Us Human by Jonathan Gottschall
Story: Substance, Structure, Style and the Principles of Screenwriting by Robert McKee
Wired For Story by Lisa Cron
Contagious: Why Things Catch On by Jonah Berger
Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die by Chip Heath and Dan Heath
The Filmmaker's Handbook: A Comprehensive Guide for the Digital Age by Steven Ascher
"The problem with pivot points – events that result in major changes in your organization’s history or your personal career – is that they often slip by unnoticed. The significance of the event isn’t recognized until later.
You typically have to dig deep into the past to identify your pivots, the lessons they taught, and the opportunities they created. The reward for digging deep, however, is that past pivot points often uncover story opportunities that can help you define your brand and create memorable story-based content marketing.
To help you learn from the turning points in your or your organization’s background, I created a simple worksheet to help you locate the relevant turning points as well as uncover the details surrounding each story."
Read the full article to download the turning point worksheet and find out more about::
two types of pivots
the three steps to harvest pivot stories and lessons
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