The Art and Science of Storytelling — And How to Use Both to Reach Your Audience

Marketers are a lot like those realtors on HGTV’s “House Hunters.” The same way they’re trying to find a bungalow with beach access that also has a downtown industrial-loft feel (and stays within a $50,000 budget …), we’re constantly striving to create content that accomplishes many things.

We need to create content that’s thoughtful and well-crafted — content that speaks to our audiences, deeply engages them, thoroughly answers their questions, and helps them do their jobs better. And we also have to ensure our content is effective, that it ranks in search for the right terms and phrases, and that it drives results both within and beyond the marketing department. We need the quaint-modern-beachfront-cottage-mansion in the best school district. Achieving all of this can be quite difficult, which is why we’re holding a webinar on February 8th on how to get it done.

The list of things your content can accomplish could seriously go on and on. And on. I think Celine Dion sang a song about it.


Creating content that meets your audiences’ needs as well as meets your monthly KPIs can be a #struggle — especially if you aren’t applying the right insights to your content creation process. Or if marketing is asking for a fenced-in backyard and sales wants a high-rise.

The best way to create that kind of content is to uncover the answers to a couple of key questions and use those insights to guide your content process.

Question 1: What do your audiences want?
Answer: An authentic story and original, valuable content they can connect with.

Question 2: What do search engines want?
Answer: Unique, long-form content that addresses searcher intent and substantiates claims with relevant data.

Enter: Qualitative and Quantitative Insights

Creating thought leadership content that shares expert insights through a compelling story and also delivers measurable results is all about looking at both sides of the coin: qualitative and quantitative insights.

In other words, it’s about bringing together art and science for the perfect content formula.

This means applying basic storytelling ideas to your content by putting your readers in the protagonist’s seat, speaking to their needs, and giving each piece an arc that they want to follow through to the end.

It also means applying hard numbers, facts, and data to each piece of content and to your strategy overall to make it more powerful.

The Results: Evergreen Content That Serves Various Departments

At Influence & Co., we’ve applied these qualitative and quantitative insights to our own content marketing, and we’ve seen great results. We create relevant content that helps us engage audiences, build our network, and generate and nurture leads. Outside these key marketing goals, we also put our content to use in our recruitment efforts and employee training, sales enablement, client service, and thought leader brand-building efforts. Basically, we’ve built the content marketing version of an open-concept kitchen that’s as functional as it is beautiful.

Want to dig deeper and learn how to use these insights, data, and storytelling to create content that fuels your business? Then join us for our webinar with Kissmetrics on Feb. 8 at 12 a.m. CST/10 a.m. PT.

Register today!

Author description: Brittni Kinney is a VP at Influence & Co. and loves discussing how content marketing can help any marketing strategy achieve its full potential. She likes her coffee black and her whiskey straight; she also enjoys traveling.

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