In today's digital world, content can often be equated with its ability to evoke emotions, compel action, and create a lasting impression. If you're looking to master this art form in your marketing, there's no better teacher than Matthew Luhn, a prominent storyteller for Pixar, the animation studio renowned for its storytelling prowess. Facts tell, but stories sell.
Pixar has storytelling as a fine art! [pardon the pun]. And if you ever wondered about the power of a story to move people, watch until the Mercedes Ad. at the end. I guarantee it will have you reaching for the Kleenex
Here are the main points of the video:
The Origin of a Master Storyteller
Luhn's life story serves as a compelling narrative in itself. Born into a family with a long lineage of owning toy stores, his affinity for storytelling was practically preordained. Yet, it's his journey from a toy store in San Francisco to the revered halls of Pixar that makes his insights invaluable.
Emotional Resonance is Key
Matthew Luhn eloquently addresses a fundamental principle that marketers often overlook: emotional resonance. He argues that the success of Pixar films doesn't primarily stem from high-quality animation, stellar voice-over performances, or groundbreaking technology. Rather, it's the emotionally resonant story that remains indelible in the audience's memory. As an astute marketer, you can take note: it’s not the plot but the heart that makes your content memorable.
The Science of Storytelling
While marketing often leans towards analytical—data-driven campaigns, lead generation metrics, and SEO performance, Luhn emphasises the neurochemical aspect of storytelling. Powerful stories trigger endorphins when they’re happy and release cortisol when they’re sad. The rollercoaster of emotions makes content unforgettable. Just think of Steve Jobs introducing the iPhone. The narrative he crafted wasn’t just about a piece of technology; it was a transformative journey that had the audience hanging on his every word.
Visual Cues and The "What If" Principle
Luhn points out the importance of visual elements in storytelling. The typography and color you choose aren't merely aesthetic choices; they send a message. He also introduces the concept of "What if" as a story opener. The notion immediately instigates a level of intrigue and curiosity. Imagine posing a ‘What if’ scenario related to your product or service. It is an instant hook and promises the audience a tale worth their time.
Crafting a Narrative that Transforms
It’s essential for a story to promise a transformation. No one wants to stay static; we all seek evolution in one form or another. This principle holds whether you’re crafting a campaign or leading a company. Through a narrative, you can guide your audience through a transformative experience, giving them not just a product but a new viewpoint, making them more inclined to trust you and take the action you desire.
In a business landscape awash with content seeking attention, Matthew Luhn’s storytelling principles stand as a sophisticated approach to capturing the elusive element that makes content truly unforgettable: emotional connection. And in an age where consumer attention is the most valuable currency, the ability to tell a compelling story isn't just an art; it's a critical business competency.
So what’s your story and how are you telling it?
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