Kevin Spacey proposes three pillars that must be present in every good story.
1. Conflict – “Conflict creates tension and tension keeps people engaged with your story.”
How do you create conflict while trying to sell whatever your business creates? Make your customers and the leaders of your industry the heroes of your content by sharing how they overcame problems and found solutions.
2. Authenticity - “Stay true to your brand and audiences will respond to that authenticity with enthusiasm and passion.”
Spacey goes on to contend that, “It’s no longer about who you know or how much you can afford but what you can do –audiences have spoken, they want stories.” The content you create doesn’t need to be top-of-the-line video or epically gorgeous, interactive micro sites. Start small and start with what you know: answer your audience’s questions with internal knowledge and be a problem solver for your customers.
3. The Audience – “Does it matter what’s behind a link if no one clicks on it?”
Don’t create content for content’s sake, and don’t let your content exist in a vacuum. You need to work for your audience in order for them to work for you- this means creativity, distribution, measurement, and iteration. In today’s content ecosystem, you can no longer throw up a blog post and walk away.
Storytelling is an age-old technique that has been used as a tool in order to communicate big messages. However, in today’s world, there is a story that wants to be told but has no ears to listen. This is the story of Japanese Comfort Women.
Japanese comfort women have had their own story withheld from being told. Their own people refuse to listen to the stories that they have been so desperately wanting to tell. There’s an extreme conflict involved in their stories, they are authentic at the most, but what’s more difficult is having an interested audience who will listen to their stories. They are the stories that want and need to be told, but which are not heard.
Images by: cja; wnrun