Why is digital storytelling so hard?

We keep hearing over and over that storytelling is how you get ahead in business.

Storytelling is the marketing buzzword at the moment.

Storytelling is how you’re going to grow your brand… it’s how you’re going to survive online… it’s how you’re going to become the next big thing.

So if storytelling is so effective and brands like Nike, airbnb, Apple and Virgin have been storytelling for decades, why aren’t more marketers doing it?

The stats show that only around 10% of professional marketers are actually using storytelling and brand storytelling as a technique to grow their own business and their clients’ businesses. But why is that?

Storytelling is hard

Relearn how to write

The first thing to acknowledge  is that storytelling is technically hard.

So if you’ve learned to write at uni or through a marketing college, and you’ve learned traditional writing or copywriting you’re going to have to relearn how to write.

Marketers need to learn how to tell a story that will get results.

Our writers at Brilliant Digital have varied backgrounds in writing, but they’ve also been trained to be digital storytellers, which requires a unique set of skills.

Transformative journey

A transformative journey

A story should show the reader a transformative journey.

For example, if you’re doing a case study on one of your successful clients, you need to avoid the style of case study that is very formal, and very focussed on outcomes.

That’s not what it should be – it should be a story about how you took your client through an evolution.

Start from the beginning, looking at where they were before they met you, and go through the journey with them.

Describe the trials and tribulations, the learning and growth, all the way through to the outcome at the end. Use storytelling to demonstrate and put in to context what your customers can achieve with your product or service.

Make an emotional connection

Take the reader, or watcher if you’re using video, on an emotional journey with you. Get them to understand and go with the client on that journey, and get them hooked in to the brand. Have a look at some of our Case Studies here.


Strategic storytelling

A strategic approach is essential

The second important point that we need to reiterate, is that your storytelling has to be strategic.

Just putting a few case studies on your website is not the same as strategic storytelling.

Storytelling has to become the essence of your brand. 

Yes, it has to be in your in case studies on the website and all through your online collateral and team pages. But it is truly effective when it becomes more than that – it has to be everything that you stand for.

Storytelling essence

Storytelling is central to your brand

Storytelling should be present in everything in and around your company and it’s interactions.

Use it when you’re writing about what happened during the week in your updates. Or through your team story that goes out as part of your recruitment drive to get A grade talent.

Think of it as the constant evolution of your brand story online.

And it has to be done strategically with thought, not randomly. You need guidelines and structure around it. And you have to have a system to get the content out in a measured, consistent way.

Storytelling requires a technical skill that is hard. It is essential that you learn to write specifically to tell stories.

Do this strategically, within brand guidelines, and you will see the results.

Talk to us today about using effective digital storytelling to transform your business.

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Brilliant Digital
Sydney based with clients Australia wide

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NSW 2164

02 9939 5223