It's crucial for content marketers to be skilled at storytelling, so it's perhaps ironic how often it's something they struggle with.
For marketers adapting to content marketing it can be particularly hard to break out of an egocentric, product-focused mindset, and recalibrate into an audience-centric mindset that offers genuine insight and value to customers.
Carla Johnson at Type A Communications believes the best content marketers who consistently tell a great story through digital channels utilize different ways to give it dimension and make it richer.
Where I think brands begin to step outside their “customer success story” comfort zone is when they start to produce stories that are actually tangential to the brand. There is a context connection to the brand, but the stories aren’t about the brand, they’re not about their customers, etc. They’re about real people, doing real things, and tangentially connected to the brand. They draw people in because the content is cool, inspiring, surprising, meaningful, and the viewer then has the experience of discovering “oh, wow, BRAND X was behind this content.” It’s these contextually related, but unexpected, stories that I think create experiences that have the opportunity to be engaging in surprising ways.
Trying to communicate to an audience in your voice only, about your products and services only, and striving to be the sole source of content on your chosen topic just doesn't work. Being subtle is actually the more powerful way to gain people's attention—and most importantly—trust. Stop Egocentric Marketing is an eBook with powerful lessons on the difference between storytelling and selling, while Johnson has 14 experts offer their insights about storytelling in the link below.