Why Do We Like Marketing That Tells a Story?

According to OneSpot, 92% of consumers want brands to make their ads feel like stories. With that said, who doesn’t like a story? Several companies have already realized the impact of storytelling marketing and have begun appealing to our emotional side. One notable marketing effort was the recent Christmas commercial from Apple titled “Misunderstood,” that told the story of a boy and his seeming obsession with his iPhone.

Both iOS and Android users found this commercial heartwarming, but the real question is – why? Why do we like digital marketing that tells a story?

Our Brains

It comes down to the way our brains operate while we view a story versus how they operate while we view hard facts. It’s easier for us to remember information when it’s presented in a story than just stated, because when we’re told a story, neural coupling occurs and dopamine is released.

Neural coupling occurs when our brains are activated by a story and as we listen, we’re able to turn that story into our own understanding. We immediately sympathize or empathize with the situation in a story, and it becomes something we care about. Our brains also release a chemical called dopamine (responsible for emotion), which makes the information in the story easy to remember. Hard facts, however, don’t trigger neural coupling or dopamine, so we don’t get emotional and we don’t remember the information as easily.

In Marketing…

When it comes to digital marketing, you want to make your product or service memorable, so that you attract more customers. So, when creating an advertising campaign, remember that emotion is usually a successful choice.

For example: If you watch a dog food commercial that tells the story of a puppy rescuing a bird, then watch a dog food commercial that tells you what ingredients are in the dog food, you’re probably going to like the story commercial better and be more inclined to purchase that brand. This is because you’ve experienced emotion during the story.

If you’re thinking about a new digital marketing campaign or revamping your old one, consider the storytelling aspect.

Examples:

Powerade:

Honey Maid:

On a lighter note, Jameson:

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