Strategic Stories can be transmitted through a variety of presentation formats. Today, we will look at Story Branding. You find this format mostly on Websites to Social Media. Digital Storytelling should be kept at the 1 – 3-minute mark, beyond three minutes takes more creativity to keep the viewer to the end.
The two stories that follow is a second level of Strategic Storytelling we call, “ Storytelling Branding.”
Patek Philippe’s one minute commercial creates both the brand and image by using visual metaphors. The black and white photography creates an air of sophistication and drama. The video highlights five major cities that represent the five major UTC Time Zones. Each time zone is equal to 10-seconds of video time. In each of the five segments an adult is wearing a Patek Philippe watch, and the adult is always paired with a son or daughter image. The last ten seconds explains the whole message: “You never actually own a Patek Philippe, you merely look after it for the next generation.” This is more than just a watch to tell time, it is an investment in technology and fine art. The music is soft, classical, and subtle. It ends with, “Begin your own tradition.” The Brand is set like a museum piece of fine art and the whole video plays into this concept.
The second commercial says absolutely nothing about the product, “Red Bull Stratos.” The video was edited down to 1:30 minutes. It is the historical documented highest free-fall jump ever done—24 miles in altitude. The video went viral and has been seen more than 41,500,000 million times. The only brand icon visible was on top of the parachute. Brilliant! Red Bull, in the past has spent over $75 million per year advertising and marketing its product in the U.S. However, the viral video, “Red Bull Stratos,” rose sales 17% to $1.6 billion dollars in the United States. Globally the company sold 5.2 billion cans, which was a 13% increase. Red Bull’s slogan: ‘Red Bull gives you wings’.
Storytelling Branding has a beginning, middle, and end. It differs from Strategic Storytelling, which is more of a persuasive argument. The purpose of branding is to identify your product-service customer’s values. If done correctly, the story will do most of the work. Story Branding must build trust, confidence, and inspire emotion. Without the emotional element, the story will end when the video ends. Shut the sound off and see the video again, and then think about what Alfred Hitchcock once told his apprentice. He said, “Even if they shut off the sound to my movies, the images will still deliver the message and emotions.” This is good advice when developing your video storyboard.
Images must convey meaning through their actions and expected emotional response. Background music should never over power, but act more as a supporting actor. The story must lead the viewer to a conclusion on your Brand’s strength: Trust, Confidence, Reliability, or Leadership. Which of these two videos would you use as your branding template?