In 2016, an estimated of $41.4 billion in advertisements were blocked worldwide by ad blockers. Interrupt advertising was lethally wounded. Advertising budgets plummeted. Marketers started feeling frustrated and unable to reach their audience.
After decades, consumers learned to distrust advertising. They felt so attacked, that they even started paying full-price programs to avoid those “annoying” ads.
Think about it, this is one of the many reasons Netflix and other on-demand services got so popular. Even HBO placed the bet on HBO-GO. Consumers had the final word, they despise unwanted ads, and if your brand wants to get their attention, you’ll have to earn it.
That’s when Purpose-told stories and Storified Advertising comes in.
Storynomics: Story-Driven Marketing in the Post-Advertising World
When I started reading Robert McKee’s Storynomics, I started questioning myself whether I knew anything about advertising at all. Things were easier back then when all you have to do is trust billboards and TV ads, you just had to invest in advertising, and that was it. You had the upper hand.
But everything has changed. Now it isn’t enough to talk about benefits and affordable prices. Big brands like Apple or Dove have turned to stories in order to reach an audience that is now immune to interruption advertising. They want to hear stories with purpose, and emotion. They want a brand to wear as a badge. A brand that also tells a story about who they are.
But how do you do that? How do you craft a story so appealing and engaging that makes audiences fall in love with your product? Screenwriters may have the answer.
Robert McKee is the author of the Story Seminar and the screenwriter’s bible. The tutor of master storytellers like Jimmy Fallon, Peter Jackson, and Russell Brand. An expert that knows his deal about how to tell a compelling story, is now helping brands with their storytelling.
Applying storynomics to your business
One of the most common obstacles businesses have when trying to tell their stories is not knowing what to tell. Most of the times, they end up telling a chronological story about how they ended up doing what they do, when consumers actually want to hear more interesting facts, like why you do what you do, or what is it that your business wants to accomplish –your purpose.
We’re engaged with stories because we can empathize with others. Whenever we start watching a movie or reading a book, we start looking everywhere for the protagonist’s goal. We need to understand what her desire is before we can actually worry about it.
With brands, it’s the same. It all starts with balance until something happens (a product-launch, a new campaign, an incident.) After that inciting incident, the brand longs for something, and ideates a plan. The audience is aware of how this new plan can turn things to one side or another of a binary value like love/hate, or success/failure. This is where your consumer is actually able to root for you and feel thrilled until you reach the climax where you finally manage (or not) to sell your product.
Let’s say you are a web developer, and you want to reach your audience. Instead of just saying how awesome you are, and showing your portfolio, you can immerse your consumer in a story where the two values are: poor design / communicative design. This way you can explain why it’s so important to have an intuitive and responsive web design in a way that’s fun and engaging to your audience –and most important: shareable.
Telling your story
Nowadays, it’s way easier to tell a story with tools like Instagram Stories, Facebook Stories, and the help of social media. You don’t need to create a blockbuster or a bestseller to tell your story in an authentic, and engaging way.
So, what do you say? Start with something little, and engage with your audience through a short story today.
If you want to read more about Storynomics, you can click here.