The power of data-driven story-telling

Why it matters and how to start doing it brilliantly.

Once upon a time brands liked to push stories out to the world through email, social media and TV spots. They tried very hard to listen to their many audiences and tell stories that would appeal to most people, most of the time. But gradually, the raw power of data changed the communications landscape: dramatically. Brands and their trusted agencies wised up.

Today, we’ve stopped trying to push communications out to everyone and instead started thinking about what specific audiences are really interested in, gathering insights and using them to craft powerfully focussed stories with instant appeal. These insights cover all sorts of ground. Where does the audience hang out? Who does it trust? How does it like to consume content? What hashtags or keywords can quickly draw us into the right slipstream? Who are the key influencers in the space? How do we know when we’ve got our approach right? Can we measure it, prove it, segment better and keep getting wiser?

The team at Fluro spends increasing amounts of time building content around story-lines designed to resonate in a very specific way. Mapping out data points. Honing messaging. Of course, there are obstacles to success that every brand faces and we have got good at vaulting them.

  • The sheer noise out there. This brings with it the attendant difficulty of capturing and keeping any individual’s attention. One way we get around this is by making content ruthlessly visual, shareable and snackable. Easy to digest and circulate.
  • The erratic nature of the average buying journey. As the world becomes more digital and dynamic, decision-making has become increasingly hard to map and predict. That means we have to listen harder, crunch data smarter and think more creatively.

The value of the second-hand experience.

With every new era comes new rules. The reign of 80:20 is over; in this new evolution of data-driven marketing, the 1:9:90 rule is the one that really counts. This refers to the value of the second-hand experience.

  • The 1 percent are influencers who create and shape conversations around a topic and actively drive the market. Today, that could be anyone from a journalist to a blogger or YouTuber.
  • The 9 percent curate and repackage influencer content and share it with their receptive communities.
  • The 90 percent absorb what’s out there, gathering recommendations about brands and deciding what to trust.

Focussing on the 1 percent and the 9 percent is a great way for brands to cost-effectively reach that lucrative 90 percent. We’ll explore this topic in more depth in future blogs but the key takeout for now is that we all need to start listening to what matters to this critical 10% in a more focused and analytical way. By artfully seeding the right brand stories with the right people while weaving the different benefits of earned media, paid media, shared media and owned media we can create beautifully threaded campaigns with happy endings.

Fluro believes in the power of organic agency networks; drawing the right specialists together to solve different communication challenges. Right now, we’re collaborating to deliver the power of data-driven story-telling for many of our clients. If you’d like to know more, just get in touch. Old-fashioned email or the phone both work for us.

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