Mastering Event Storytelling

When thinking about storytelling, the main conclusions are that anyone can tell a story and that storytelling isn’t a valued skill. Storytelling is not just a reserved skill used for children’s bedtime stories. Storytelling can be a strong marketing tactic for your upcoming virtual event. We as humans like to talk to each other and visualize the conversations. Compelling stories are easy to remember, so why not use them to your advantage? 

To briefly summarize event storytelling advantages:           

  1. Transform your virtual event into a unique and extraordinary event. 
  2. Provide attendee comfort and a sense of belongingness. 
  3. Escape the reality and enjoy the virtual environment. 
  4. Incorporate storytelling strategies into your brand and mission. 
  5. Inspire attentiveness and action in your attendees. 

Stories are used for entertainment purposes, but recently storytelling has made its debut in event promotion. Not only promotions but also the whole strategy regarding virtual events, physical and hybrid events. To be successful, companies need to have good storytelling skills and good storytellers.   

What is exactly storytelling and why is it important for your next event? 

Event storytelling is important because storytellers can connect their brand with specific topics. This connection allows brands and companies to be associated and identified with wanted topics. Moreover, people are encouraged to use their imagination and be creative while listening to the speaker. This way, attendees will remember your brand more vividly than other brands, because you stand out.  Storytelling can be done verbally, visually or with written communication. To guarantee success and growth, the mentioned skills and objectives must be used throughout the whole event and your brand. The point isn’t to use story elements on your front page or presentation. The story must resonate with you throughout the whole event. 

Different stories should be the essence of your event. They can be used for entertainment purposes as well as inspiration and education. The concept of stories is straightforward.  Good stories sell and they incentivize engagement on so many levels. The reason why is that they enhance empathy. Research confirms that over 65% of our conversations are connected to various stories and gossip. This is the way people communicate and what is known to them. Use this to your advantage. 

Benefits of using storytelling for your events: 

First of all, stories are easy to remember. Much easier than standard presentations. When people listen to stories, more areas of their brains are activated. For the brain, it is not important if the story is good or bad. It still sticks in our memory, so using stories activates word-of-mouth marketing. Naturally, people still like to talk about their experiences. 

Nevertheless, we want our story events to be good and fun to retell. So how to do it? 

First, a story must contain at least one point that the audience can relate to. Maybe something they have previously experienced or something that tickles their imagination. 

Another objective is the struggle. Your story must contain some tension, it must keep the audience up on their feet. The story will then leave a mark on them.  

Next, your story must have an ending bathed with optimism. 

Lastly, a call to action. In other words, why is the story important? What do you wish to achieve and what should the audience do? 

Of course, stories should be authentic. No point in stories that are fiction because you cannot connect them to your company and brand. 

Events that successfully use storytelling: 

If you start using storytelling for your events, you won’t be an icebreaker. You can learn from others who have already done it. 

The first example is The MDA Telethon: The Power of the Hero. Every year for 49 years straight, the telethon talked about people with Muscular Dystrophy. The stories were about searching for a cure. The stories were inspiring and because of that, they were able to raise over 2 billion dollars for the cure. 

The next event is Dragon Con: The Power of Imagination. Stories are about using your imagination and having something to escape our everyday lives. Dragon Con is held every year in Atlanta, and they incentivise their attendees to become someone else for the day. 

To conclude, if you wish to include storytelling in your events, there are many ways to do it. Stories should be immersed in every part of the event. It should have a consistent and straightforward message throughout the whole time. Stories can be an everlasting part of your brand and the great thing about stories is that they are present even after the event.