Why storytelling is the future of online marketing.

Posted By: Matt Harris

The numbers are in.

Video content online is the fastest growing media that consumers are asking for.

Recent figures released by Adobe have shown that viewing video has seen growth of 29% on a tablet and 59% on a smartphone. Netflix now eats up a whopping 35% of ALL internet downstream traffic. Online video starts (the number of times a video has started playing online) was 38.2 BILLION times. 

These figures are enormous.

Now more than ever is the time to start investing in and using video content to reach your target market.

However to me the word "video" just seems wrong. It harks back to the eighties and VHS tapes and just doesn't seem the right way to talk about the delivery of the type of high quality moving images that are now possible using almost standard desktop machines.

Now we can create motion graphics, 3D animations, shoot at 4 times the definition of HD and edit and colour graded it all on the same software that they're using to edit Hollywood movies.

And don't forget about the possibilities from aerial imagery now using drones so that suddenly the traditional "corporate video" can now have the same look and feel of a RIdley Scott epic (well almost), for the same budget that you would have built a website on 5 years ago.

But it's not all about the techniques and technology. Fundamentally the sucess or failure of any approach using film is the storytelling. The script. The way you get your message across by creating an emotional link between you and your viewer.

This is key. This is where you'll get the returns and where you'll get the engagement.

How do we know this ?

If you've been on our website you will have seen the 3 minute video we have on our homepage. This was produced to tell a bit of a story about the region we're based in and also about our history and where we're going.

It was put together to just prove how effective video can be when done with passion and most importantly with a story at it's heart.

When posted on Facebook and other social media channels, within 24 hours we had an incredible response rate and to date the figures are really quite impressive.

Facebook : 4,466 people reached. Vimeo: 855 plays and numerous comments and shares across Twitter and Linkedin as well.

Those numbers are pretty impressive as there is no marketing behind them. They've all been generated by word of mouth and people spreading the message because they've liked the story.

The film has also been shown at various business and cultual conferences around the area, really helping to cement our name as the go-to agency in the region. And yes it has generated business, way surpassing the cost of the actual production.

What do we think is the underlying reason for it's success - witout a doubt its the story that has grabbed people. They get drawn into the idea and of course the aerial imagery and pace of the film helps, its the fact that at it's heart is this great story that has a beginning, a middle and an end.

Its the reason why we switch on the TV, go to the theatre, play games and watch movies.

We're indelibly linked to the art of storytelling, it's a part of who we are as a species and so taking this idea and working it around a company or brand is really just the same thing that advertising has been doing for years. Although now we have these incredible channels to freely distribute our messages and reach markets and audiences previously outside of the budget realms for all but the very biggest brands and organisations.

So now is the time to start thinking about a story - let's face it every company has one and now there is the opportunity to really bring those stories to life and tell the world.