Storytelling is not just for fiction writers and movie directors: this is an important skill for any internet marketer that wants to build a relationship with their readers. Storytelling is ‘SEO for the human brain’ and it is more engaging and motivating than nearly any other kind of copy. The best content has the best story. In fact, some internet marketing gurus and others will tell you that ‘storytelling is SEO for the human brain’.
What does this mean?
It means that when we write as marketers, as bloggers or as webmasters, our aim is to engage the audience and keep them on the page. The biggest challenge we face in this industry is high bounce rates. This means that people are landing on our pages, not taking much time to look around, and then leaving again. When they do that, it means that they aren’t going to click on our ads, they aren’t going to read our articles and they certainly won’t buy any products.
Giving your content a story helps to engage the reader and draw them in.
- Stories help us to relate to the writer and put ourselves in their shoes
- Stories are naturally engaging with a beginning, a middle and an end
- Stories will often use inviting structures with cliff-hangers
- Stories are often written in the first person, thereby drawing the reader in more
You can then further enhance these effects by using a number of other psychological strategies to make your content all the more engaging. For instance:
- Using rhetorical questions in order to get the audience to think
- Using emotive language
- Addressing the reader directly
- Getting the reader to imagine a scenario
How to Write Great Stories in Your Articles
So how do you write an article in such a way as to give it a good storyline? If you are promoting something that is naturally quite a ‘dry’ and ‘dull’ topic, how can you possibly turn that into a gripping narrative?
One option is to simply think about scenarios that the audience can relate to: either imaginary, or from your own experience.
For instance then, if you are writing about insurance, then you can write about how a friend of yours was once in a car crash and they didn’t have the right insurance. This then gives the reader the opportunity to relate to that person and can take them through a sequence of emotions that will hopefully ultimately lead them to feel interested in getting insurance.
You could then add in some rhetorical questions that address the reader:
- Have YOU thought about your insurance?
- How would YOU cope if the worst thing should happen with your finances?
This is far more powerful and engaging than simply listing off a sequence of facts and figures regarding insurance, or telling the reader in a removed and detached manner all the reasons that they should consider getting insured. So think about how you’re phrasing your content and whether you could benefit from spinning a yarn!