As new technologies are developed and new ways of interacting online emerge, sometimes it’s best to take your digital offering back to the basics.
One of the key digital trends forecasted for 2016 is the art of Storytelling. Sure, we’ve been telling stories since the origin of man: sitting around a fire, sharing aural traditions in a millennial game of Chinese Whispers.
But while the original story has changed, the art form itself has not – it’s just evolved. From campfires to books, films to Netflix: a good story is a time-tested strategy to capture your audience’s undivided attention and motivate a desired response.
At the heart of storytelling is the human element that people can relate to.
Think about the core themes of your favourite films and novels and why they’re enjoyable: people can either relate to the characters or invest in them emotionally.
Effective communication requires the ability to persuade the audience. Storytelling connects brands and consumers through authentic, inspiring dialogue that motivates users to adopt your key message.
Of all the platforms we have for storytelling, the digital landscape is primed perfectly for real user engagement and interaction. As an intangible medium, websites have the ability to present information to users in interesting and compelling ways that traditional media lacks.
The 2-way nature of online creates huge opportunity to allow the user to actively participate in your story, and studies show that the more people actively engage with information, the more likely they are to retain and accept your efforts.
One of the most interesting areas of web design we are moving into is the idea of pageless web design.
Although one page websites are already becoming popular, these largely do not integrate their story with the design.
Ensuring that your reader is actively moving through your site to know more about you is the ultimate goal, and we’ve seen this rolled out successfully with prompts to the user to scroll, press a button, or move an object in order to progress through the site. Some even encourage the user to watch a video in order to continue (with the option to skip), creating a multimedia site that tells a viscerally compelling story.
The key to storytelling is ensuring it is authentic, engaging and accessible – start off with the right web design, and the story will tell itself.
Jess Kumanovski, JTB Studios Account Manager
JTB Studios, Digital Agency Melbourne