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Telling A Story Isn’t Enough

 Telling a story. Content marketing the ID Group, Bournemouth, Dorset

Just because you’ve made a commitment to creating and curating content, doesn’t mean it’s good content.

In a world of content excess, telling a story simply isn’t enough anymore. What matters is that it has to be something that your audience can relate to. As businesses we are now competing on a higher level from industry competition and awareness but fighting for relevancy.

We All Need To Make A Connection

The one thing that businesses need to do to grow an audience who listen and believe in what you stand for is to make a connection, rather than simply delivering a message because we happen to be good at a particular product/service. Times have changed from automation and repetition to originality and authenticity.

Any message that is created and distributed has to move away from interruption to focus on being significant to others. Brands now need to deliver information that is believable, credible and above all else to make an emotional connection.

Telling a story is only part of a message, making a connection is where the reward lies for any brand. A successful story is one that connects on a human level and means something to an audience at a specific moment in time.

Leading Up To Two Examples That Explain What I Mean

In a world of information surplus in the marketplace and consumers with an increasing attention deficit (as described in Michael Brito’s excellent ‘Your Brand The Next Media Company’) we find clarity when there is something that we can associate with.

Here are two brand examples that represent emotional connection that hits the spot or is way off target. Lets start with what’s off target and where telling a story just isn’t enough.

Clairol Nice ‘n’ Easy

Clairol’s Nice ‘n’ Easy commercial focuses on a man describing his wife, Kate, as being more beautiful now than she has ever been. Using the product has kept her beauty and vitality, as well as being married for 15 years and having two children.

It can be said that hair dye does help the appearance of looking younger, having two good looking models as the main characters in their mid 30s just doesn’t represent authenticity, somewhat far away from reality and unconvincing. The real world doesn’t mean make-up is attended meticulously from morning to night and for every toned man who’s exercise regime is 5 days a week at the gym and a daily smoothie, there are thousands more who consider a walk on a weekend will suffice.

Whilst the advert may be relevant in terms of stating that you can achieve beauty no matter what age, the overall message doesn’t look believable and that vital connection of authenticity is nowhere to be seen.

Johnson’s Life Is Reborn

Whilst we associate Johnson’s with baby skin care, the advert doesn’t make an overt message to promote a product or to portray a utopian world that babies are the answer to ever lasting happiness. I guess this advert strikes a chord personally as last year I became a father, so is relevant to me at a point in my life. But for any parent, it’s something to relate to about a world that is adapted to and the affect it has on others. The message stays consistent with the overall Johnson’s brand and is believable, human and has a degree of empathy.

To Round Up

The only way to have meaning with the content that we produce as businesses (and individuals) is to be relevant to those we are looking to generate a reaction and to be regarded as a trusted source. Whether that is to build a conversation or to make a connection, we need to be realistic to those we intend to serve.

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