Sometimes reality is too complex for us. Storytelling does a great job of giving meaning that can be remembered. Video storytelling tools can help.
Are you familiar with the business Tom’s Shoes?
They are most known for their establishing and giving to a cause. The cause is, of course, shoes for the needy. TOMS donate one pair of shoes to a child in need for every pair of shoes it sells.
In April of 2011, Blake Mycoskie, the founder of TOM’s shoes, did something even more radical: He asked everyone to go barefoot for a day. Mycoskie understood the power of telling remarkable stories.
By making his customers a part of the narrative, he was able to make a much larger difference than if TOMS had simply donated the shoes without a social media campaign.
One Day without Shoes is now a yearly campaign dedicated to educating the world of how many children in developing countries grow up barefoot and without shoes, putting them at risk of infections and diseases.
Recently, the company took it one step further. For every photo of bare feet tagged on Instagram, they gave a new pair of shoes to a child in need. At the end of the campaign, 296,243 photos were tagged—and the same number of shoes was pledged to children in the developing world.
Why use storytelling?
Facts often can be boring and overwhelming, can’t they? Stories, though, not nearly as much. They are much easier to understand and much more entertaining. Therefore they are much better at spreading ideas.
Facts are meaningless without a contextual story. Don’t tell facts to influence, tell stories. The more you improve storytelling, the more your influence increases… it is as simple as that.
Stories make it easier for people to understand. They are the best way, by far, to spread your ideas. Especially when there is a large competition for people’s attention.
Digital storytelling examples … what makes storytelling great?
Although everyone defines a ‘story’ differently, Andrew Linderman, founder of The Story Source and adjunct instructor at New York University, notes that, at its core, content marketing is storytelling with the goal of driving a particular action.
Business storytelling, specifically, is a way of connecting an experience, or series of experiences, to a specific call to action. But before marketers can effectively drive business through content, good stories must all exhibit these three key qualities:
Do you employ video storytelling in your business? If not, Is your lack of video creation skills holding you back?
The right apps make it easy to produce social videos on your own easily.
Here are three of my favorite tools for this essential task.
Video storytelling tools … YouTube Director
YouTube Director is a revolutionary tool to create video ads for business. Geared toward local small businesses, it’s a foolproof way to tell a compelling story in a short format.
As you follow the prompts, you’re guided to capture images, video, and voiceovers. Then you can post the video and run a video ad campaign on YouTube.
YouTube Director lets you create polished video ads right from your phone!
It’s available as a free iOS app download, and you can get started with a tap of your finger. (I suspect an Android version is coming soon, as this is a Google product after all.)
With YouTube Director’s step-by-step directions, anyone can get started with video ads. Once your video is complete, upload the finished product to YouTube and start promoting your business or product across the web!
If you don’t want to shoot a video yourself and plan to spend more than $150 on ads, check out YouTube Director onsite. They’ll match you with a local filmmaker who will help you write a script and come to your location to film your spot. This free service will be available first in major metropolitan areas like Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Washington DC, with more cities to be added soon.
Video storytelling tools … Adobe Spark
Adobe Spark Video is an elegant, easy-to-use tool for creating animated videos that tell a story. It’s available as a browser-based cloud app or as an iOS app. You can get it as a single app or install the 3-in-1 tool to access the Spark Post and Spark Page companion apps too.
What’s great about Spark Video is that it’s quick. You can create a compelling animated video story in just minutes without any design experience, and work on your project from anywhere. As a cloud-based tool, your progress is saved and synced automatically, so you can work on it on mobile or desktop whenever creative inspiration strikes.
Video storytelling tools … Animoto
Now let’s look at a tool that’s similar to Adobe Spark, but gives you more flexibility over your content. Animoto is an affordable, cloud-based tool that offers an assortment of choices and customizations to create a one-of-a-kind video to tell your brand’s story.
This tool gives you a little more control than Adobe Spark Video. You can start with a blank canvas (choosing your colors, styles, and frames to more closely match your brand) or adapt one of the tool’s wide variety of templates.
Another cool feature of Animoto is the video pacing. Animations are automatically synced with the background music you choose. To slow down the animations for a more relaxed feeling, click Change Song and choose a different song.
If the pacing still isn’t how you want it, you can manually speed up the pacing or slow it down. Click the gear icon in the
If there isn’t a template you like, choose one of the customizable options and build your own from scratch.
The bottom line
Now you have three tools to create video storytelling!
Adobe Spark is a foolproof way to tell a structured story and produce slick videos. Animoto, however, gives you more control over the video style, which is important if you’re trying to stay on brand. YouTube Director gives you shot-by-shot guidance and is a great option if you’re planning to use the video for an ad campaign.
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Mike Schoultz is the founder of Digital Spark Marketing, a digital marketing and customer service agency. With 40 years of business experience, he blogs on topics that relate to improving the performance of your business. Find them on G+, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
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