What's Trending: The Story of You

April 20, 2018

Marketing and Storytelling

How many stories are in your building?

It might sound like I’m asking an architectural question, but no. Instead, I am urging you to think about the many different narratives, anecdotes, and tales that exist within your office walls.

As we move forward into an age of content marketing driven by authenticity and originality, do not underestimate the power of compelling and relatable stories.

Earlier this year at SmartInsights, Carolanne Mangles argued that storytelling is the future of content marketing strategy in 2018, and it’s tough to argue with that. Thought-provoking narratives and riveting personal accounts have the ability to capture an audience amidst the deluge of corporate jargon and regurgitated marketing clichés.

We increasingly see salespeople use conversational storytelling to engage prospects during presentations. If you’re a frequent peruser of social media, you’ve surely noticed that many of the most viral and engaging posts feature someone sharing a personal experience that strikes a chord. New technologies are helping brands make their stories more immersive and interactive. Storytelling can even be utilized to improve recruiting and hiring.

It’s certainly been an area of great interest for us here at LinkedIn. Recently, we released our colorful new ebook, Once Upon a Digital Story, laying out the fundamentals of genuine narrative in today’s cluttered environment. And earlier this week on the blog, Keith Browning published a post detailing the seven different story arcs that reliably resonate with people.

As Chris Warden wrote on the Convince and Convert blog, this focus is all about zeroing in on a human element. “A company is nothing more than the story of the people who created it, what brought them to this point, and where they want to go in the future.”

As you determine where you want to go in the future, let the stories of your business and its people guide you. The following insights from bright marketing minds around the web might help, too.

What Marketers Were Reading and Sharing Most This Week:

1. 4 Reasons Your Story Is Your Most Valuable Marketing Asset

At Marketo, Joe Michalowski writes that a focus on stories can help businesses navigate changing social algorithms, deliver excellent customer experiences, maximize influencer marketing, and choose the right channels for content delivery.

2. 62% of B2B Marketers See Video as Priority Format, Finds LinkedIn Study

Given that video is such an effective medium for storytelling, it’s no surprise that nearly two-thirds of marketers polled in a new study view it as the most important content format. John McCarthy discusses these results and what they mean.

3. Six Brilliant Examples of B2B Video Content (& Why They're So Good)

On that same note, Nikki Gilliland put together an excellent list of exemplary B2B videos at Econsultancy. This roundup includes a few of our favorites, plus some astute analysis of what made them work.

4. Mastering the Craft of Storytelling

If you have an hour to set aside, I highly recommend checking out this video webinar from OgilvyRED on mastering the art of storytelling, with David Hofmeyr discussing key elements and illustrating them through recognizable Hollywood examples:

5. Native Will Dominate Display Spending in 2018

New estimates suggest that native advertising will consume around 60% of display spend this year. Greg Sterling breaks down the new data from eMarketer.

6. How to Use LinkedIn in Your B2B Content Marketing Strategy

Good overview here from Michael Brenner on ways for B2B organizations to optimally implement LinkedIn as part of their strategies and harness its full potential.

7. The Search & SEO World in 2018

If you want to develop a comprehensive grasp of where the SEO landscape stands at this point of time, and the SERP transition from results to answers, Rand Fishkin’s presentation below is a must-view:

8. Sustainable Link Building: Increasing Your Chances of Getting Links

Link building can be a tough undertaking because so much falls outside your direct control. But in the latest Whiteboard Friday session at Moz, Aira cofounder Paddy Moogan swings by to drop some knowledge on how to improve your odds.

9. Time to Consider that Links Matter Less for SEO?

Here’s another thing to think about: maybe link building isn’t as important as it used to be. Calling out a recent comment from Google’s John Mueller during a Reddit AMA, Roger Montti suggests it may be time to rethink our hardwired conceptions about optimizing for search.

10. Why Great Content Alone Isn’t Enough to Build an Audience

Writing an awesome story isn’t enough on its own to make an impact. First it needs to be seen. Sonia Simone offers up helpful outside-the-box tips, like developing relationships with publishers and “borrowing” an audience.

Where will your story take you next? We’re excited to find out. Subscribe to the LinkedIn Marketing blog for more advice to ensure your marketing stays on script.