As brands battle for consumer affection in digital and try to circumnavigate paid media, storytelling is becoming increasingly important. There’s an argument to suggest this is due to the rise of social media, while others believe that as consumers we just love to be told a great story. In 2015 marketing professionals will be rediscovering this fact and using it to their advantage.

So what is brand storytelling?

In essence, it’s the application of narrative thinking and storytelling techniques to define a brand, inform strategy, and structure creative activity. It’s a way of thinking about brands that puts narrative at their heart, and makes them both compelling and meaningful.

Every brand has not just one but multiple stories to tell. Good stories keep surprising us; we become hooked and want to know ‘what happens next?’. Apple is a perfect example of this with more than one-third of the population (36%) citing the technology giant as a brand they’re intrigued by.

Brand storytelling however is hardly a new idea, but we as a nation are becoming savvier and less likely to be taken in by a manufactured backstory. As a result, brands are beginning to harness the way they tell their story and the way they connect with the audience in a much more sophisticated way than ever before.

This is where interactive storytelling comes in. Storytelling is moving beyond being just about content, and beginning to incorporate elements of design and user interaction. Brands are delivering more personal experiences through advertising and personalised websites which truly understand their audience and what makes them tick.

The Honda Civic ‘The Other Side’ ad is a great example of this; the interactive dual-story video gives viewers the choice to dictate how the story is told, empowering the user and offering a more personal experience.

Tesla Motors’ website follows a similar idea, using leading edge techniques in web design like parallax scrolling, webgraphics and microinteractions to demonstrate their content and key product features. It demonstrates how interactivity and design can be combined to create a personalised story within a brand.

Interactive storytelling has helped to bring brands alive and we will undoubtedly see this continue to develop in 2015. We are living in an age of increasing digital noise and these techniques will not only make brands stand out but help to nurture and engage communities.

 

By Fast Web Media





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