How to: Digital Storytelling for Social Media Success

The talk that I attended facilitated by Christopher Wick of SMM International was a mixture of presentation and Q&A that discussed how we can all increase our digital storytelling methods for better social media success. However, from the talk, I felt that he was mostly talking about social media use to sell rather than attracting.

What are people currently doing on social media?
– taking lots of pictures and showing it off
– informing people of what they are doing

What do people currently think the purpose of social media is?
– connecting with an audience
– a medium to share information about their lives

Social Media as a whole is quick changing and sees a very rapid growth on a daily basis. Digital storytelling is using online media effectively to communicate a story by taking their audience on a journey rather than just informing them about the news. Something that is usually overlooked is how industries think too much of the process and content and not about the viewer/reader.
The digital storytelling process/guidelines based on the presentation:

1. Come up with an idea, write a proposal

  • What do you want your user to do?
  • Why do you want to do it? What is the purpose?
  • Who is your audience?
  • Eg: Nike women ad “Inner Thoughts” brings their audience (women) on a journey with their story, not once showed their shoes or clothes in focus, but with an action at the end of video (posting their online link). 

    2. Coming up with a great script

  • The story and journey should have a turning point, a “hero’s effect”
  • Simple, effective words because attention span of an average 7 seconds online.
  • Don’t mention so much as showing them things, showing them they want to offer
  • Don’t just make a statement

3. Put it all together

  • When creating, have the end goal in mind
  • What do you want to happen when people see your piece online?
  • Connecting with people their mission – call to action (but don’t just state DONATE NOW, give them a purpose to do so).

4. Feedback and Reflect

  • The great thing about social media is that we can EDIT even after posting (trial and error until it is good and ready) but don’t wait to perfected to post. Feedback is good to be better.
  • Testing and measuring through online analytics (eg: Facebook, Twitter, Buffer etc) which helps assist us as a company to see patterns, trends and demographics
  • Measuring brands and audience through clicks (bitly, urls, clicks)
  • Putting links at the end of your message can intrigue audience to go visit site. This helps see if showing the link actually does or doesn’t direct audience to website. (Eg: Nike ad -> visit us at -> analytics to see if people actually go after seeing ad)
  • Great way to create a meaningful community through facebook, twitter and instagram – don’t make it boring, don’t just inform, tell a story, make interesting content (eg: vs. <– specific to people’s interests


Aliaputri Mohd Kamal

Aliaputri Mohd Kamal

sophomore in advertising at University of Illinois
Aliaputri Mohd Kamal

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