Is Digital Marketing all about having a data sheet with no stories? Marketers need to be able to aggregate data and use it to tell stories otherwise it’s useless.

Data will keep markets lean and help your business grow, but often we see marketing as a numbers game, not a story. We don’t think customers are lured by data, but it’s the content, aspirations and stories that trigger a purchase.

Recognising this involves a transition from content strategy to brand storytelling.

If you have doubled-up your content marketing  efforts with producing articles, infographics and how-to videos, it’s now time to build and target specific segments of your market.

Data tells us that:

  • Every 60 seconds, 700,000 Google searches are performed; 60 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube
  • Blog-posts with videos are linked 3x more than text-only links
  • 3 trillion ads are shown online each year.

Marketing is noisy and everyone wants a piece of the pie. To retain your audience attention, dare to be different – it need not be sophisticated, instead your brand needs to be simple, targeted and genuine with these 5 hacks for successful ecommerce storytelling.

#2 Deploy User-Generated Content

If data tells you that you have received high CTRs from user-generated content, it’s time to tweak your approach. Everyone has content to share and with the rise of Instagram stories, Facebook stories and blogs it becomes easier to generate genuine content that has been proven to be likeable by your target audience.

GoPro is easily a fine example of using user-generated content all by starting the #GoPro hashtag. On instagram, there are 27 million user generated content using GoPro covering drone footage and POV cool videos.

There is even a webpage dedicated to show the best user generated content by customers.

Starting out, you need to ensure that your product is positive and audiences interaction have been great. To get the ball rolling, get in touch with influencers or ordinary people to share your passion with them and hope they see the value in it.

Once you have built a solid reel of experiences from passionate individuals, showcase them to the wider audience and park a reasonable ad budget to push these content to your audiences.

#2 Share Content From Leaders In Your Field

Having leaders in your field who have already developed a steady stream of content is what you should set your goals on.

This is a great multiplier marketing effort to retell stories and strengthen your brand voice. Storytelling for busineses not just about inventing a story.

Instead, sharing and retelling the reason why your business exists, why you have come to this point to develop products and services and why they should aspire to believe in.

Shopify is a great example of doing this and while many ecommerce stores uses Shopify as their go-to platform, it’s good to take a leaf of what they have done.

Under Shopify’s success stories page, they have gathered content from leaders who have successfully launched their ecommerce businesses. If you need some inspiration, whether it’s from various industries – clothing, books, crafts and jewelry to beauty, they have got every single story covered.

We tend to see businesses showcase their top 3 case studies, but if you can push the envelope further and develop more content to retain your audience and reduce your bounce rates, then why not.

#3 Solve A Problem and Publicise How Your Brand Did It

Start with interviewing your customers or new audiences and share how your brand help them solve a problem.

Consumers love problem-solving tales and if you have a strong piece of information that will spur them to create a purchase, you’ve cracked what’s needed to be done.

A great example of this is Creative Live where they set a marketplace to bring the world’s greatest experts to you, live in the form of workshops, design, business, software training and so on.

Under their blog section, they interview their customers’ transformative experience and how these classes became a turning point for him / her.

By standing out in a world of corporations and crowded marketplaces, Creative Live injected some humanity by connecting with their customers as part of their content marketing storytelling endeavour.

#4 Develop Stories About Issues That Resonate With Your Audience

Visually engaging content is stronger than ever and if you can find ways to deliver your message whether it’s in the form of comics, documentaries, short videos or podcasts then by all means go for it.

Kanabis, an animal-friendly vegan footwear that is PETA approved developed a video story in their ‘About Us’ section to highlight the story behind their shoes and how 50 million cows are slaughtered to make leather goods in India.

Using this insight, they developed friendly substitute for leather using canvas. The brand, while is still in its infancy, has developed positive reviews on their social media pages.

Generating a receptive audience who believes in the brand are great starting points that will get people talking about, and eventually lead to a purchase.

#5 Use Data To Tell Stories

There are reasons why we like to make sense of data, to find the answer we need, visualize or anticipate the findings, and hopefully reach a conclusion.

But how about if you put data to tell it in a way that is visually engaging? Not only will you solve your customer’s problem but you will serve to be branded as a standout leader serving meaningful data-driven content.

Four years ago, Think With Google published an article on how to use data to tell a meaningful story and in 2018, this insight stays true.

“As marketers, we can tailor the story to the audience and effectively use data visualization to complement our narrative. We know that data is powerful. But with a good story, it’s unforgettable.”

The Bottomline

With storytelling,  the goal is go beyond a content strategy and focus on serving a complete message. By doing so, you will serve your customers a range of experiences that will allow for direct brand engagement.

All of this will only make sense if you continue parking aside sufficient ad budget to boost and promote your quality content.

Organic reach is hard to come by and to speed up the process and create maximum eyeballs as well as returns, a digital marketing strategy supported with a strong storytelling engine will help you understand the potential of your new business.

Got a storytelling hack to share? Don’t just take our word for it and tell us your tactics.