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Storytelling Through Video

by Todd Berkowitz  |  September 18, 2013  |  Submit a Comment



In my very first blog post, I talked about how tech companies could learn a thing or two from silly animal videos. Returning to that theme (sort of), tech companies can also learn a thing from how states are recruiting people for their new health exchanges. When I wrote about the “ultimate segmentation and targeting challenge,” I talked about how the federal government (and states) would have their work cut out for them reaching the young “invicibles” who don’t feel like they need health insurance.

If you think about any marketing campaign, storytelling is at the heart of it. Yes, it’s important to get your message right! But even a great message will fail without a compelling and engaging story. (For some great tips on storytelling, check out this research from a few years ago by Richard Fouts (subscription required)). And when you are trying to reach people with short attention spans, stories are even more critical. So what do you do when you want to reach young, busy people who exhibit ADHD-like symptoms when they have to look at something ? Use silly video of course. That’s what the State of Washington did for it’s campaign for it’s new Health Benefit Exchange.

Their ads will run on TV, print, online, radio and elsewhere. The video ones feature a character named “Chance,” who personifies the gamble of going without health insurance. She can turn up any time, any place. Each ad has a funny take on a typical situation: a snowboarder tearing down a mountainside, or a woman in her backyard searching for the family cat. These everyday activities turned upside-down demonstrate risks that uninsured Washington residents could unexpectedly face to their health and financial well-being.

You can check them out here, but I would encourage all marketers to take a look as they are incredibly engaging and personify the ideas of storytelling with humor and do it in 30 seconds or less. And tech marketers can use this a model for videos they create.

Additional Resources

Category: storytelling  

Tags: messaging  segmentation  storytelling  video  

Todd Berkowitz
Research Vice President
3 years at Gartner
18 years IT Industry

Todd Berkowitz is a Research Vice President focusing on B2B technology marketing and sales. He advises product marketing leaders, CMOs and sales enablement leaders on how to improve the effectiveness of their demand generation, sales enablement, account-based marketing and upsell/cross-sell efforts. He also looks at how data, analytics, content and tools can improve marketing-sales alignment and overall effectiveness.. Read Full Bio

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