Story and Narrative
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What Social Customers Will Demand From Your Brand in 2013

What Social Customers Will Demand From Your Brand in 2013 | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it

With 2012 drawing to a close after a U.S. Presidential election that took social media engagement to even greater heights, brands from all sectors will be expected to raise their activist profiles in 2013 and partner with consumers to achieve their respective goals. The writing is already on the wall when you consider the strategic positioning of many global social brands. Nike’s ‘Better World,’ Starbuck’s ‘Shared Planet,’ Coca-Cola’s Open Happiness,’ the Pepsi Refresh Project and IBM’s ‘Smarter Planet’ should all be viewed as platforms for co-creative storytelling with their customers directed towards a shared social purpose.

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Which stories go viral? Those that tickle just the right spots of our brains

Which stories go viral? Those that tickle just the right spots of our brains | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it
To figure out if a story will go viral on the Web, a crystal ball might seem useful. After all, any equation or formula to figure it out would have to account for some magical mix of a story’s qualities, quirky human preferences, and online habits—at least, that’s what you might expect. But, according to neuroscientists at the University of Pennsylvania, our brains might actually have a simple, generic calculation for it.

While perusing news stories, our brains gauge whether a story is interesting to ourselves, to others, and if sharing it could improve our standing or relationships, the researchers report. Then our wily noggins seem to use standard valuation machinery in the brain to essentially combine those assessments, score the story, and ultimately decide whether to share it or not. By monitoring those brain processes as people flipped through New York Times health articles, the researchers could better predict which stories actually went viral on the Web. Their results were published Monday in PNAS.
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Secrets of Effective Brand Storytelling - Social Media Explorer

Secrets of Effective Brand Storytelling - Social Media Explorer | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it
Storytelling, as explained by Douwe Bergsma, Georgia Pacific’s CMO, is indeed a different way of looking at marketing communications, one that requires new processes, metrics, and staff. Below, you will find some fascinating details that often separate a good story from a great one, including three secrets to crafting a successful marketing story, specifically.
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Pixar Studios Offers Free Storytelling Lessons Online

Pixar Studios Offers Free Storytelling Lessons Online | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it
In cooperation with the Khan Academy, Pixar and Disney have been offering Pixar in a Box, an on-going series of behind-the-scenes lessons taught by Pixar's professionals (storytellers, animators, directors, artists, etc.). Subjects have included color science, animation, effects, set
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Best writeup on this I've read.
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Everett Bowes's curator insight, February 20, 2:43 PM
Best writeup on this I've read.
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7 Essential Elements Of Stories That Inspire Employees And Motivate Customers

“Signature stories represent a critical asset that can be leveraged over time and which can provide inspiration and direction both inside and outside the firm,” write David and Jennifer Aaker, marketing professors at the Berkeley-Hass School of Business, and the Graduate School of Business at Stanford. “Signature stories are a powerful way to gain awareness, communicate, persuade, change behavior, and precipitate discussion. They are almost always far more efficient and impactful than simply communicating facts or features.”
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Storytelling might boost your product page conversion rates: stats

Storytelling might boost your product page conversion rates: stats | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it

"Storytelling is a popular marketing buzzword, and there are numerous examples demonstrating how brands that engage in storytelling derive value from the exercise. Much of the discussion around the topic focuses on how brands tell stories at a strategic level, but according to a study conducted by Hill Holiday research division Origin, companies can profit from applying storytelling at a much more practical level too. Origin's study presented 3,000 consumers in the US with two variations of product pages – one with a "standard" description and another with a description containing some sort of story. For instance, one product page for a bottle of wine contained a standard description of the wine with tasting notes, while the variation contained the winemaker's story instead of the tasting notes. Which page performed better? Consumers were 5% more likely to purchase from the product page with the winemaker's story, and they were willing to pay 6% more for the same bottle of wine."

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We Pay Attention to Stories with Emotional Appeal

We Pay Attention to Stories with Emotional Appeal | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it

“All the knowledge I possess everyone else can acquire, but my heart is all my own.” [Johann Wolfgang von Goethe] 

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Very good read!
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5 Brand Storytelling Examples To Energize Your Content

5 Brand Storytelling Examples To Energize Your Content | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it
Today, every company is trying to share their unique story with the world. But I won’t bore you by telling you stuff you’ve heard before.

Instead let’s take a look at 5 inspirational brand storytelling examples, and the ingredients for a great brand story.
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How Storytelling Accelerates Your Pipeline Velocity

How Storytelling Accelerates Your Pipeline Velocity | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it
Marketers typically don’t think of themselves as storytellers. Creatives? Yes. SEO experts? Sometimes. Wordsmiths? You bet. But “master storyteller” doesn’t usually fall under their job description.

Yet that’s exactly what marketers are. They carefully cultivate an audience through engaging content, telling their company’s story along the way. Once members of that audience raise their hands, marketers engage them in a more meaningful way to help them become ideal customers and, ultimately, brand advocates.

B2B marketing guru Ardath Albee has pioneered a strategy that relies on relevance and narrative to do exactly this; she calls it “the continuum approach.” As buyers navigate the customer journey, they receive content as part of a narrative, punctuated by stepping stones that answer their questions and help them discover what comes next.
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The Danger In Storytelling

The Danger In Storytelling | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it
One of the principles that every good copywriter learned in her first six weeks on the job was "tell a story." The reason is simple -- people remember stories (sadly, storytelling has now become an inescapable and insufferable cliché that every dimwit marketing poseur is required by law to mention twice in every sentence. But we'll leave that for another day.)

But storytelling has its dangers.

The danger is that anecdotes make far better stories than data.
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The most innovative CMOs in the world — The Storytellers

The most innovative CMOs in the world — The Storytellers | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it
Here we celebrate the "storytellers."

These are the CMOs who have mastered the art of telling stories across platforms; the marketers who have created appointment-to-view advertising campaigns that consumers actually choose to watch; and those who have turned around the perception of their companies with messaging that gets to the heart of what their brand stands for.
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Let Emotion Be Your Guide

Let Emotion Be Your Guide | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it
So we decided to throw out the focus on the hospital website, concentrate on where emotion was taking us, and trust that we would be able to reconcile our findings with our client’s needs. We, as human beings, wanted to hear other human beings tell us about the difficulties of caring for a mother with Alzheimer’s disease. We wanted to know what it felt like to receive a cancer diagnosis after a long journey to many doctors across a spectrum of specialties. We wanted to understand what we could do, in any small way, to help make these Worst Days minutely less horrible, less terrifying, and less out-of-control. We knew that the client was behind the two-way mirror, concerned about the website navigation, but we also knew that we were going to get to someplace much more important and meaningful by following wherever these stories took us.
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5 Tips for Telling Stories That Are So Interesting Listeners Won't Be Tempted to Pull Out Their Phones

5 Tips for Telling Stories That Are So Interesting Listeners Won't Be Tempted to Pull Out Their Phones | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it
I took a deep breath and braced myself for at least another five minutes of rambling through totally unnecessary details. Why? Well, to be brutally honest, because I know that my friend isn’t exactly the most engaging storyteller I’ve ever met—meaning it was going to take all of my attention and willpower to make it through her seemingly endless and impossible-to-follow tale of woe.

You’ve been there before, right? We’ve all experienced those moments when we’ve had to do our best to actively listen while someone’s droning his or her way through a story more long-winded than Moby Dick. And, what’s even worse than that? Being the person who’s rambling incessantly.

Let’s face it—we’re not all natural-born storytellers. But, that doesn’t mean we don’t run into a ton of different situations where we need to do just that. Whether you need to explain a time you overcame a challenge in a job interview or share a catchy personal anecdote at a networking event, we all run into those instances in which we need to craft a compelling narrative—preferably without our audience’s eyes glazing over.

So, how can you tell a story that’s interesting and engaging? Well, these five tips are a great place to start.
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How NOT to Tell a Story

How NOT to Tell a Story | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it
All of this chicanery aside…what’s important for us as writers and entrepreneurs etc. is to remember that having a comprehensive understanding of story structure is not just helpful for us as creators. 

It’s an indispensable analytical tool to save us from charlatans. 

When we understand story structure we are empowered to see through the hype and directly question the motivations of the messenger.  Here’s the post again to walk you through why this advertisement set off my story alarms.
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How to make story your core message

How to make story your core message | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it

"Here's the thing, people buy stories before they buy stuff. The better you get at storytelling, the more likely you'll able to turn people into customers.


Perhaps the key point where I differ with most is that many people still focus on telling their story. I personally think it’s more about figuring out the story your client and prospect is telling themselves already and tapping into that. To show you what I mean, I’ve written a step by step guide below on how to craft your brand’s story for messaging."

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Art Jones's curator insight, Today, 2:50 PM

John Jantsch of Duct Tape Marketing has a way with taking big ideas and simplifying them. Simplification is what John does for the art of business storytelling.

 

When you wish to harness your best stories, John shows you how to make stories work for your brand. 

 

It's a short read with a few simple things to do that will make your business storytelling strategy rock! 

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Trying to Make Your Stories Interesting Might Have the Opposite Effect

Trying to Make Your Stories Interesting Might Have the Opposite Effect | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it
However, research shows that listeners are more interested when the story is about something they’ve experienced themselves.

The study, published in Psychological Science, asked speakers to watch a short video, then narrate the video to listeners. Some listeners had already watched the video and others hadn’t. The speakers expected to get more engagement from the listeners who hadn’t seen the video, but they were wrong.

People who already watched the video and knew the story enjoyed hearing it more than the listeners who hadn’t seen the video. You would think it’d be the other way around—who wants to hear a story about something they already know?
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Marketers, go back to your roots with user stories

The most important tenet of service design is working with user stories in mind.
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7 Essential Elements Of Stories That Inspire Employees And Motivate Customers

“Signature stories represent a critical asset that can be leveraged over time and which can provide inspiration and direction both inside and outside the firm,” write David and Jennifer Aaker, marketing professors at the Berkeley-Hass School of Business, and the Graduate School of Business at Stanford. “Signature stories are a powerful way to gain awareness, communicate, persuade, change behavior, and precipitate discussion. They are almost always far more efficient and impactful than simply communicating facts or features.”
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3 Reasons You Don't Need Experience to Write a Damn Good Story

3 Reasons You Don't Need Experience to Write a Damn Good Story | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it
Think of it this way: At the ripe age of 24, Stephen Crane wrote The Red Badge of Courage, long after the Civil War ended and having never served himself.
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Storytelling and UX: Separated at Birth

Storytelling and UX: Separated at Birth | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it
Learning storytelling in a group from an experienced storyteller provides an experiential sense of story that can’t be captured with a set of procedural instructions.  There are great courses out there.  We can learn a lot online…but if we want to understand something as deeply human as storytelling its ideal for humans to interact with other humans.

Here’s why: A story blends emotional, visual, kinesthetic and rational reasoning routines without separating them.  Personal stories illuminate insights that are specific to a situation’s people, complexity, texture and relationships. A vibrant true story delivers a hologram of culture, nature, nurture, space and time from an embodied human point of view: WAY more information than a story formated via a hunt and peck search for hero, quest, obstacle, helper and journey.
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Welcome to The Outline

Welcome to The Outline | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it

A weird new adventure.


Welcome to The Outline, a new kind of publication for a new kind of human. We made this thing because we believe that the right story told in the right way can change someone's life. But telling the right stories for right now — and telling them in a way that's meaningful and modern — isn't going to happen by itself. We have to make it happen. No one else can do it for us. So we're doing it. I'm not going to bore you with every tiny detail, but by now it should be rather clear that something is broken in the way the media functions and in what is expected of a media organization. This is not entirely the fault of the news industry, but it's not not the industry's fault. The math of this miscalculation is clear: For far too long the media industrial complex has relied on the crutch of scale and quantity, regurgitative storytelling practices, the strength of other people's technology and ideas, and a skewed view of its own position in the world. And that has been detrimental to the audience and the business alike.

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I'm excited about this. Should be darned interesting to follow.
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What Bloggers Can Teach B2B Brands About the Art of Storytelling

What Bloggers Can Teach B2B Brands About the Art of Storytelling | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it
It’s not hard to write a story about a family sitting around the dinner table, or the man on the football pitch, or the child conquering a challenge. But when it comes time to write a blog post about your B2B product, the words don’t seem to flow quite as well.

It’s too easy to fall into the trap of viewing your company blog reader as a faceless logo or flat business card, and the end result is a 400-word advertisement or an instruction manual. If your B2B content marketing is failing to bring in the readers, this might be why.

In search of a solution, I turned to a group of popular bloggers. With millions of page and video views to their names as well as critical acclaim, these powerhouses know a thing or two about writing stories readers love to share. I asked them how they weave brand information into their content and what advice they would offer about the art of storytelling.

Here are their key tips.
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donhornsby's curator insight, November 30, 2016 9:24 AM
Being real means finding a voice and style that matches up your internal team with the external face, so customers get a consistent experience. Be honest about what type of content you’re creating, not trying to turn every product feature into a 500 word story, and finding those kernels of truth where a story can shine. Most importantly, be realistic about what you're trying to achieve, setting small goals and taking what the readers want into account.
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Every story is the same

Every story is the same | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it
In the video above, Will Schoder explains Harmon’s theory using a number of different stories (movies, books, TV shows, etc.) as examples, most notably the original Star Wars, which George Lucas created using Campbell’s ideas.
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The Viral Power of Storytelling in Content Marketing

The Viral Power of Storytelling in Content Marketing | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it
The first logical question here is why you should try to use storytelling in your marketing strategy. Well, there are several reasons for that.

First of all, stories are interesting. People are curious in nature, and many of them are good listeners. When a narration is genuinely impressive, they are willing to spend a lot of time digging into these stories. In childhood, we love to listen to fairy tales; when we grow up, we hear the stories of our friends. Captivating stories are entertaining for everyone, even asocial people.

Second of all, stories gain trust. Whomever you decide to share your personal stories with, it makes you closer, right? The thing is that storytelling is quite an intimate thing. You don’t tell stories just to anyone. The same as in life, publishing an engaging story on your site will help you become closer to your readers who will come back for more stories.

And finally, people are just more perceptive towards stories, in contrast to dry statistics and facts. Last year there was some research conducted at Pennsylvania University involving physicians that proved this point. The study showed that doctors perceive and remember the information about using anesthetics better if this information is offered in the form of a story about a patient Frank.

Another research study (this time a sociological one), conducted by The Journal of Marketing Theory and Practice, showed that despite the content itself (whether there are kittens or celebrities), the success of a post is mostly defined by its structure. It turned out that people like stories the most.

We are social creatures who need to compare ourselves to other people, feel a connection to them and put ourselves in their shoes.
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How to Use Instagram Stories: A Simple Guide for Marketers

How to Use Instagram Stories: A Simple Guide for Marketers | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it
Stories provides Instagram users with a chance to share posts at a higher frequency. While Instagram photos are typically reserved for perfectly composed shots, Stories allows you to share the little moments that may not be as picture-perfect.

Instagram is positioning this feature as a solution to over posting. There is a significant separate space where your Instagram Stories live and you can post as frequently as you want without worrying about over flooding your friends’ feeds or filling the grid on your profile page.
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How to Use Brand Story for Crisis Management

How to Use Brand Story for Crisis Management | Story and Narrative | Scoop.it
If the worst were to happen, are you prepared to act swiftly and protect yourself and your brand?

By understanding your message deeply and thoroughly, you can prepare for certain unpleasant situations. But more importantly, cultivating a corporate crisis management culture will help keep your story consistent and compelling.

Melissa Agnes is passionate about brand crisis management and prevention. She strongly encourages any organization to take the time to delve deep into their core values to learn how to best articulate and follow them. She also suggests a few simple questions to ask before ever launching a campaign or advertisement that might help avoid a crisis altogether.

Melissa takes us on a journey through her career, touching on what led her to this particular niche. She shares why it’s so important to deeply understand what your brand stands for, how speed and accuracy are paramount, and how owning your story and communicating directly will often save the day.
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