Marketing Lessons from Past and Present Storytellers

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In today’s digital landscape, storytelling plays an essential role in appealing to customer preferences and experiences. But what can we learn from the greatest storytellers in history? In this article, our social media agency in Bangkok, Thailand provides examples of how storytelling is used by some of the most effective public figures of the past and present, as well as the interactive benefits of storytelling, and how you can get started.

Making them the hero

Joe Rogan is one of the world’s leading podcast hosts, with over 2.2 billion views on YouTube alone. On his podcasts, he speaks directly to his audience, making guests and listeners the heroes of their own stories. When guests appear on the show, the resulting discussions usually follow a particular theme. They focus on delivering a message to the audience, helping them relate to a topic of discussion, and empowering them to make a positive change in their life.

This effective approach also serves as a call to action, which in turn encourages listeners to buy certain products, partake in recommended activities, and advocate for various causes, making Joe Rogan one of the most influential speakers of our era.

Being the guide

The best novelists captivate their readers by creating realistic and thought-provoking scenarios, but only some are able to create stories that shift perspectives. A great example of this narrative technique can be found in the work of H.P. Lovecraft. His novels encourage readers to accept that despite our collective intelligence and wisdom, the world features much more to learn, and far more important things than ourselves.

Lovecraft deliberately makes comparisons between character narratives, guiding readers through worlds that have so much to learn, explore, and experience. Using this form of storytelling, Lovecraft positions himself as the guide, taking his readers from one chapter to another while keeping them engaged and leaving them to their imaginations.

Focusing on impact

In 2007, Steve Jobs captivated the tech world by revealing the first iPhone. His presentation followed the perfect formula for storytelling, which focused on delivering a memorable experience for the audience. He started the presentation by giving his audience a visual roadmap of new developments at Apple, followed by the unveiling of his product – the iPhone.

In essence, his presentation was aimed at creating anticipation and suspense. Just like a theater performance, his narrative technique spoke to the desires of the audience, and why they needed this new product in their lives. Steve Jobs helped to build a fanatical following through the delivery of the most impactful product presentations in history. In today’s era of digital marketing, a lot of the advertisements that we read and listen to are similar to theatrical performances – and the best companies pride themselves on the delivery of such content.

The benefits

When used the right way, storytelling lets companies appeal to a larger customer base by humanizing their brands, tapping into the lives of the general public, and helping them relate to a message in an advertisement, blog, or video. Success in this effort makes it more likely for your audiences to refer to you when they need a product or service, given the relatability of your brand. Furthermore, the use of storytelling is a great way to keep your audiences engaged and paying attention to your social media feed.

Remember that consumer behavior isn’t just a matter of numbers. People use both intuitive and rational modes of thought when it comes to purchasing. Storytelling is therefore a great opportunity to inspire your audience to get behind a cause, either to drive brand awareness or to raise consciousness surrounding environmental, sustainability, or other social issues.

Depending on the time of day, location, or platform, using one or another storytelling approach can help you appeal to an audience of your choosing. And with the right storytelling partners, you can raise your brand awareness, drive up your product sales, and become well respected in your field or industry.


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