Storytelling. Since the beginning of time, we’ve been sharing stories to document our lives, to learn from one another or to inform others.
Although it’s an old concept, more companies are now realizing the value and power of storytelling to promote their brands. Forbes has reported about it. There are all kinds of tips and tricks out there to help marketers do it well. But storytelling is as much an art as it is a science.
Storytelling is our daily bread here at Pace, and so it had to be the theme of our fifth annual conference for marketers, Content +.
Before joining the Pace creative team, I was a journalist and magazine editor. I built my career crafting stories about all kinds of people, from public and elected officials to famous people to everyday, average folks. But the stories that moved me most were about people who were marginalized, misrepresented or overlooked completely. That’s why I was excited to attend the session on inclusive storytelling, “The Humans of Storytelling.” The goal was to provide attendees with a practical road map for achieving more inclusive storytelling. It featured Fredgy Noël, an award-winning director/screenwriter based in Manhattan who is known for her quirky, inclusive and female-driven films that incorporate a balance of narrative and documentary-style techniques. Alongside Noël was Pace’s Brittany Johnson, Associate Creative Director, who spoke about inclusive accessibility as a cornerstone of effective emotional storytelling, while Brian Bowen, Vice President, Head of Production and Executive Producer, moderated.
I’ve always felt that the foundation of effective storytelling is in making connections, and Noël revealed that making connections is a big part of her process too, because once you make those connections, you begin to find commonalities.
“Everyone wants to be loved, to feel safe and to feel respected. If you can create work that allows people to feel this way while watching your work, then you’ve done your job,” she said. “When it comes down to the core, these are the things that we all want, so I always lead with that.”