Long-form Story-telling: Chapter One
“Humans are not ideally set up to understand logic; they are ideally set up to understand stories.” Roger C. Schank, Artificial Intelligence Theorist & Scientist
This week I want to dive into my favorite subject…that’s right, you guessed it: storytelling. (Hello, I’m Lindsay, a typical copywriter who likes all things words and the occasional dragon. ?)
You may not think so now, but your brand has an interesting story to tell, and one that deserves to be shared with your loyal followers. Storytelling is the life force – the root of marketing – and it’s our job as marketing wizards to tell that story well. Yes, the basis of social media is to post a quick snapshot and produce that instant hook, however, long-form content is proving to be a much more effective way to make that business-to-consumer connection.
Facebook & Instagram: What kind of longform content should I be posting?
“Ultimately, you should create long-form content because it will get you more of what you want: more online visibility (social shares, links), more proof of your authority and industry expertise, and more material for altruistic community building and engagement.” – https://neilpatel.com/
Long-form social media is a strategy we started doing more of this year, and as a copywriter, I personally have found it more creatively freeing. Pro Tip: this is a job for people who love to write!! Long-form means spending more time on the keyboard and takes more thought and planning than your typical short-form post.
Since our content is hyper-focused in the building industry, our goal is to show prospective homebuyers what life could be like in their dream home. The more time we can spend with them on a post, the more valuable that post will be to the consumer.
Here are a few examples of long-form content we’ve done for our clients:
If location can fit into the marketing of your brand, show it off! The Porter Ranch community in Chatsworth, CA is located near several natural trails and hikes (one of its big selling points!).
Blogs are excellent material for long-form content on social media. We do this a lot for one of our builders, WCH Communities. The following post features exact points from the blog and informs the reader about the benefits of small lot living:
Have an event or campaign coming up that you want to promote? This is the perfect opportunity to come up with some fun and creative long-form content that will get your followers excited! The following is a post for a KonMari campaign we did for builder, Shea Homes San Diego:
It’s easy to just post a link with a recipe and move on, but think how much more interesting it would be to post the FULL recipe into the post instead? Here is an example of a recipe post we do every week for the Mountain House community:
Long-form blog content and how to make it better!
“Blogs that are between 400 and 699 words (the conventional number for blog word count) see a lot of quick traffic. Readers come to the site, read what they came for and move onto the next site. Blogs that have 1,500 words or more give the reader substance and allow them to stick around on the site, increasing metrics and clicks on the site.” – https://expresswriters.com/
Again, this is a job for your wonderful copywriters and freelance writers who have the time to RESEARCH! Not to sound like a broken record, but information is pure gold and storytelling at its finest in the blogging world. Instead of writing up a post about 10 ways to do something, try coming up with 100. Teach someone how to use one of your products with a long series of videos and graphics. Share some in-depth stories about consumers using your product and how much it has impacted their daily life.
Whatever the subject matter might be, you want to make it personable. Use first-person narrative and have a conversation with your readers. SEO optimization is also important (check out our SEO guides HERE and HERE), but you don’t want to over clutter your piece with keywords just for the sake of ranking high on Google. Make it flow and make it readable. ?
Thus begins our kickoff to celebrating long-form content! Stay tuned for part two coming soon. If you have questions or feedback on our monthly topics – drop us a line below!
Lindsay Gerner is a Senior Digital Copywriter at Get Community. She studied Creative Writing at Concordia University, Irvine and got her MFA from Pepperdine University.