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How Story Works on the Brain to Inspire Action

As a team of passionate storytellers, we felt compelled to share a video we recently came across.

In this case it is not about the production value, the editing or anything about the presentation at all (I know coming from us shocking)… it is purely about the information.

The video is nearly 6 minutes long (an eternity for most online videos) and yes… we would have presented the information differently (e.g. the beginning is a bit of a bummer) … but please try to move past this stuff because the information provides scientific insight into why you should really focus on using story as the engine behind all of your marketing communications.

It proves how a story based approach can make an emotional connection with a viewer that can physically have an effect on the brain. The result is a direct correlation to a desired action.

The emotions evoked do not just have to be “distress” and “empathy” (the examples in the video). In fact, the emotion(s) you focus on should have relevance to what is important to the message and your audience.

And the story does not have to be “once upon a time”… but it does have to be a story and not just a made up marketing pitch like what Toyota has currently embarked upon (see video below):

Editors Note: There is nothing about the Toyota video that is a real story. It just pretends to be … Really, it is bunch of brand messages that don’t resonate because they haven’t been connected together in a way for you (the viewer) to care.

So what do you think of our position on the Toyota video and more importantly the science of storytelling?

Any examples of good story based approaches that worked? Failed? Why?

We would love to start a conversation about this… maybe the examples are videos maybe not… We are looking forward to the story that hopefully unfolds.