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5 Reasons You Should Be Talking About Transmedia Storytelling

Have you seen the new Coke bottles? A few weeks ago I received a text from a friend.

“OMGosh! I just saw your name on a Diet Coke bottle!!! It was even spelled right.”

I’m not a soda drinker so when she pinged me I wasn’t sure what she was talking about. A quick Google search and there it was – a bottle with my name on it!

The Share a Coke campaign swapped logos for 250 most popular first names among American teens and millennials. I’m not the demographic they pursued, but even I got excited to see my name on a bottle. The Coca-Cola Company clearly understands making it personal wins. People are talking about their brand and sharing stories. They even gave fans the chance to be featured on an interactive billboard by using the #ShareaCoke hashtag when posting photos and stories. Great transmedia strategy, Coke!

So why should you be talking about transmedia storytelling?

Transmedia Storytelling – put simply – is a strategy that pairs the use of storytelling with a multi-media deployment. Here are 5 reasons to get the conversation started at your company

1. Brand awareness – Are people spreading your message?

The easiest way to generate conversation about your brand is to tell a story worth sharing – in Coke’s case, deliver a product that creates brand evangelists. Yes, Coke is a well-known brand, but awareness is bigger than just knowing your name.

Do people want to share your story?

2. Audience participation – Are people engaged and participating?

So you created buzz, but did you offer your audience a chance to get involved? Part of Coke’s strategy included the use of a hashtag. Since the campaign started in June, more than 125,000 posts have been generated across all digital channels. Transmedia storytelling includes opportunities for the audience to participate and engage with your brand.

Do you include participation opportunities in your strategy?

3. Loyalty – Are you creating brand enthusiasts?

To create true loyalty you need a meaningful connection. One of the things I love about Fitbit is the inspiration and motivation they offer like their 30 Days till Summer Fit challenge – packed with daily “try me” tips. It’s about me and it’s meaningful, because Fitbit wants me to succeed. I’m not just loyal, I’m an evangelist.

Do you create enthusiasts?

4. Identify gaps and opportunities – Are you gaining traction?

You’ve finished a great campaign and got people excited about your brand. Now is the time to sort through results to see what you could do better or if there are still gaps in your storytelling strategy.

Ask yourself:

  • What channels worked best? Why?
  • What aspects gained the most traction? Why?

Example: The use of a simple hashtag in a campaign automatically expands your reach. So, if something works do it again. If it doesn’t, design a new strategy.

Do you rinse and repeat strategies that were successful?

5. Follow through – Are you building onto your story?

Aflac had great success with their get well campaign; 30,000 people sent sympathy cards to their duck – so how did they continue the success of creating a storyline around their iconic bird? With a DIY storyline featuring HGTV’s Scott McGillivray and an opportunity for three lucky social media friends to win a visit from a home improvement expert.

How will you continue your story?

Transmedia storytelling is a fantastic approach for any company looking to expand their reach, so start talking about it!

Now, about those Coke bottles – it’s a limited time offer so check the site for your name (or someone you know) and head to the closest grocer to grab your personalized bottle. I got mine!

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