I’ve made an observation. I could be wrong, but I feel like businesses and content marketers are forgoing storytelling-based content for the more popular styles of content like list post and how-to articles.
As an SEO, I assume this is because it’s easier to promote these types of content to influencers for backlinks. And that may be the case, but I caution against forgetting about the most basic way to communicate ideas and move people to take action.
While specific styles of content may be easier to promote and increase domain and page authority, visitors don’t care about any of that.
The Content Marketing Institute defines content marketing as:
“… a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action. “
While it’s easy to get lost in technical marketing aspect of the definition, in the end, content marketing is more than just visits and impressions. The goal is to move human-beings to action. The goal is for your product and brand to resonate.
Don’t get me wrong. I enjoy reading a good top 10 article like anyone else. These types of articles can be very helpful and informative, if done correctly. But if you want your content or blog to enchant and emotionally connect with customers, don’t sacrifice storytelling.
Storytelling is the most powerful way to share an idea and motivate people to take an action.
When I was about 9 years old, my older brother and I were making fun of what appeared to be a homeless man under the influence of drugs, while sitting in the back of our car. We were driving down La Cienega Blvd, in Los Angeles on the way home and had come to a red light.
My father, while driving the car told us to stop making fun of the homeless man and insisted he was on drugs and on the street because he trusted the wrong people. He said, it was likely someone close to him (a friend) that offered him drugs to begin with. And those friends, were not there for him, when he needed them most. And he proceeded to tell us a story about a friend that he’d known that had the same fate.
My brother and I sat up straight in out seats and didn’t say a word for the rest of the ride home.
Today, I’m 35 years old. I’ve never taken any drugs or alcohol and I’ve never allowed anyone to talk me into doing anything I didn’t want to do.
Now the funny part is, I don’t think my father was trying to teach me a lesson at 9 years old about friendships, drugs and leadership. It also doesn’t matter if he was right or wrong about his assumptions.
He just tells stories, it’s how he communicates. This particular story heightened my senses and motivated me to be conscience of every decision I make for the rest of my life.
My father could have just said, “shut up back there.” And my brother and I would have cut it out. But the story communicated unintended life lessons and got the result (quiet kids) he wanted.
We can do the same with our content.
So, tell stories about your customers, employees products and services. Let visitors discover the “Why” and connect with your brand in a way that only stories can deliver.