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The Art of Storytelling in Advertising

Every marketer has one dream: to be able to plant an idea in a person’s head and have them take action. This seems impossible. But fortunately for us, it doesn't require some sort of superpower. There is a tool you can use to connect your ideas with the imagination of your ideal audience.

That tool is storytelling.


Stories communicate messages in emotionally impactful ways. They are memorable. They give us something to hold on to. Stories connect with our emotions, and our emotions drive our decisions. Storytelling can be one of the most powerful tools a marketer has to reach their audience and it’s something you should master.

Here are some techniques you can use to create a story for an effective ad campaign.


1. Brainstorm

Grab some friends, get some coffee, pick up a pencil and some paper and start thinking. Come up with colorful ideas that are going to grab your audience’s attention. Once you have a list of ideas, it helps to write a premise to help ensure that your story is interesting enough.


2. Include a hero and a desire

The purpose of a hero is to give your viewer a perspective of the story you create. They will see the world through the hero’s eyes and feel their emotions. Through the hero, you can prompt the emotions and the ideas you want the viewer to associate with your brand.


3. Hide Information

One tool that writers use to capture the imagination of their audience is by carefully managing the balance of what the reader knows and what the reader does not know. It forces the audience to figure out who the character is and what he is doing, and so draws the audience into the story.


4. Be Authentic

Make sure your story is real. Make it personal. The best way to do this is to base it on real-life experiences. This makes the story easy to relate to. 


5. Use Humor

Many of the most memorable ad campaigns tend to be funny. Viewers will pay more attention to a humorous ad than a more serious or factual one, opening themselves up to the influence. The comedic commercials are also the most talked about, drawing millions of people into watching them.


6. Make it visual

There is a reason children’s storybooks are mostly pictures. Visual interpretations bring stories to life. Internet users remember the video ads they watch online as opposed to the ones they read. Use images and videos to make your story stick in the minds of your viewers.


7. Stand out

When you use storytelling in advertising, it’s a good idea to make something unique and new. Tell a story that only you can tell.