Behind the Buzzwords: Content Marketing, Storytelling and Social Media

If you’ve skimmed through any marketing or communications articles recently, you’ve probably noticed that storytelling and content marketing have become very popular and somewhat mysterious terms. Before you question your brand strategy rest assured – content marketing at its essence is storytelling, which is at the core of all marketing communications efforts.

A good story creates a connection, entertains or shares emotion, provides useful information and inspires thought or action. We start with a good story when developing PR campaigns to gain media exposure, communicate a brand’s essence in an ad and while curating images and content for a website. Simply put, storytelling is how we share who your brand is and call attention to those interesting details that build interest among your audiences.

As communication seamlessly moves from traditional media to websites to social media our storytelling takes on new dimensions. Social media users demand easy-to-consume bites of content favoring images and video over text-heavy messages. This is where the term visual storytelling emerges. Like any memorable form of communication, visual storytelling requires a keen sense of timing, a compelling message and a coy understanding of your audience. As you develop your story we’ve collected a few guidelines to help you make a great impression and a longer-lasting impact.  

Know Your Audience

Adapt your content to fit each social site. Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Vine and YouTube are great social media sites for visual storytelling, but experience varies from site to site, as do users’ expectations. Maintain your messaging across each site, adjusting your delivery to fit the conversation medium.

Mix it up

Experiment with different forms of visuals ranging from short videos, stylized photos, candid photos, graphics and infographics. Pay attention to which forms perform best and where.  

Tell a Story

Easy one, right? Just as one-liners don’t last long in your memory neither will a trendy graphic if it doesn’t fit your brand. Spend some time thinking about who your brand is and integrate that into your images and videos. Incorporate advertising campaigns, new product launches and seasonal events into the structure to create cohesion in your communication and establish relevancy in your timing.

Be social

Social media is all about the conversation and that means listening too. Engage your audiences by posing questions or invite them to share content with you and reply to their feedback.

For an assessment of your brand’s social media presence and to develop a visual storytelling campaign, contact Victoria Hill at Scheffey Integrated Marketing.

By: Victoria Hill, Social Media & Public Relations Specialist