Great marketers establish emotional bonds with their customers and prospects. Nothing can be more powerful in forming an emotional bond than an authentic story. The more parts of the brain a story can involve, the more senses it can evoke, the more powerful it becomes.
Right now the social media platforms are vying with each other to have a stronger visual appeal.
The Visual Race Begins
Visuals are flooded on all social media platforms. Earlier visuals were found mainly on Facebook and few on blogs. Then came Pinterest, (which is a powerful tool for professionals involving visual work such as architects, interior designers, fashion designers), who can not only showcase their products and services here but also club them into boards / categories. Flickr is another popular platform which also provides the option of creating slideshows.
Internet users are supposedly suffering from ADD or “Attention Deficit Disorder” as we keep multiple tabs open (on our desktops/ laptops or smartphones) and spend little time on one webpage / website or keep jumping from one site to another. Visuals were suitable for this new online world of attention deficit as lesser time and effort are required to understand and process visual content compared to text content.
Facebook and Twitter copy each other
Soon we saw that Twitter introduced many Facebook type features, encouraged visuals and even introduced a separate tab for ‘Photos and videos’. To support visual format, other features were added like tagging, adding location and so on. Soon LinkedIn also provided the option of uploading a photo and was flooded with inspirational quotes and other visuals. An option was already available to upload PPT and visual content on LinkedIn profile.
On the other hand Facebook added Hashtag (like Twitter) and added even more advanced features to support visual content like directly uploading videos, creating slideshows and so on. Facebook groups also provided the option of uploading PowerPoint presentations.
PowerPoint gets sleeker and sleeker
Multiple PPT creation and uploading sites have come up in past few years which include Authorstream and Prezi, besides the popular site Slideshare. PPT is getting sleeker with options to add background music, embed videos and so on.
In simple words, PowerPoint slides have been getting sleeker and jazzier. Integration of multimedia options also mean presentations have become even more powerful tools for storytelling.
It’s high time you told your visual story
“A picture says a thousand words”, has become a cliché, yet it shows the power of pictures. Add little text to the visuals, and they tell a powerful story. Inspiring quotes of motivational speakers (Tony Robbins, Robin Sharma, Stephen Covey) and spiritual gurus (Swami Vivekananda, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, Sadhguru) are very popular on Facebook and Pinterest and are powerful for content marketing /viral marketing.
Ideally a story should tell a narrative (sequence of events with twist and turns) and hence should consist of multiple pictures with or without text and sound. A PPT presentation is a powerful tool for telling stories of people, organisations, products, destinations and so on.
Steps to tell a better PowerPoint Story
Most of the content can be in bullet point format yet small paragraphs can be used when they are needed to make the story powerful. Here are ten steps to create powerful PPT stories:-
a) Create a storyboard first and visualize your presentation using pen and paper.
b) Your storyline / storyboard should provide a structure and logical flow to the story.
c) Gather material like images, music clips, drawings etc.
d) Start with a problem or conflict. Resolve it in the end.
e) Use bright colours and high energy words to make it inspiring.
f) Use minimum text and select visuals which can tell the complete story on their own.
g) Dramatize wherever possible. No drama, No story.
h) Use twists and turns to keep the audience gripped till the end.
i) The more emotional a story is, the more likely it is to stay back in the memory of audience.
j) Avoid making your organisation or product the hero of the story. Let your customer, prospect or audience be the hero. Here is a powerful example:-
Sometimes the product can be the hero also, if there is an authentic story.
Wishing you happy visual storytelling.