Tag Archives: Storytelling

TOMS shoes and now eyewear?

They’ve done it again. TOMS is rolling out a new line of glasses! For every pair you purchase, TOMS will give sight to a person in need. Watch as Blake Mycoskie (Founder & CEO) uses video to tell the story of their newest & coolest ‘One for One’ product.

And even more impressive? Product was announced today and video was up minutes later. Learn from the best.

raising hope for congo through video

What is it with people? Why do we assume that we can take as much as we want whenever we want? Why does greed and materialism trump the nobility of individuals; children? More and more of my friends now buy organic and local produce. It’s better in every way possible right? But I don’t think many of them are aware of the damage that’s being done in countries like Congo directly as a result of the phone in their pockets or the laptop in their hands. Having a cellphone seems to be a right in the West. And I confess, I was without mine just this past weekend and I felt embarrassingly crippled. But let’s not turn a blind eye. Let’s demand conflict-free products! Let’s be aware of the advantages we have. And let’s not be okay with our advantages being at the cost of other people’s disadvantages.

Become more informed. And spread the word.

Video by Ryan Gosling.

communicating in style

Communicating your brand story starts with understanding your brand values. Who are you? What do you stand for? Is it creativity? Quality? Sustainability? What? Once you admit these values to yourself and say them out loud, you can begin to build associations and partnerships around them. And once you have these associations in mind, content creation becomes a lot easier. Good content of course. Valuable content. The kind of content that weaves together seamlessly to tell the true story of your brand.

Louis Vuitton does this perfectly. To me, they stand for craftsmanship, artistry, and beauty. And the associations that are important to them are the arts, travel, adventure, fashion and culture. So what better represents these values than their very own art exhibitions?! Of course it doesn’t hurt that they have a smashing location in the heart of Champs Elysées…

The Espace Culturel Louis Vuitton produces and hosts three exhibitions per year, around the themes of travel, heritage, art and fashion. Each exhibition attracts more than 10 000 visitors. Their micro site is pretty video-heavy. It includes everything from teasers, performances, podcasts, artist statements, stunningly beautiful music and more.

The only downside? While their videos are available on YouTube, they’re not directly accessible (and shareable) through their site.

YouTube Preview Image
“Who are you Peter?”, is the question that opened the 13th exhibition at the Espace Culturel Louis Vuitton in Paris. They invited visitors to explore the myth of Peter Pan, symbol of the eternal child. Thirteen contemporary artists were involved in telling this story.

what ira glass taught me about storytelling

YouTube Preview Image

Ok, the more I watch these videos, the more I want to share them with the whole world. Be sure to watch all 4 parts. Ira is the best! As the legendary Host and Executive Producer of This American Life, Ira is a master story-teller. I love his boyish voice. I love his candor. And I love the way he has worked so hard at becoming who he has become.

9 Lessons:

1. Use anecdotes. They let you tell a story in it’s purest form. By describing a sequence of events, your audience will inherently feel as though they are coming on a journey with you. It creates suspense.

2. Create bates. Create questions in the mind of your audience. The more “whys”, the more you will have them hooked.

3. Create a moment of reflection. This is your chance to tell your audience why you are wasting their time with whatever it is you’re doing (ie. video, film, radio spot). If your anecdote doesn’t have a point and doesn’t lead a listener to an “aha” moment, kill it.

4. Don’t keep everything. What people don’t usually tell you is how hard it is to find a decent story. If it’s not good, can it. If you’re not failing all the time, you’ll never create anything great.

5. Talk the way people normally talk. Everything will be more compelling if you can do this. “They don’t need you imitating Ted Koppel.”

6. You need to have drama. Yes the story is about someone else, but it’s important that you be in there too. You need have a personality in order to be a supporting actor. What’s interesting is seeing you interact with other people; seeing other people through your eyes. Otherwise there is no drama. There needs to be a good balance between you and the interviewee, because without good characters you can’t have a good story.

7. Don’t give up. You need to have killer taste. You need to know if what you’re making is crap. But a lot of creative people never get out of this phase. They throw in the towel too soon because they feel as though they will never measure up. But the solution is to do more work. The more volume you churn out, even if it’s free, the more likely that your work will match your ambitions and high expectations.

8. Put yourself on a schedule. Make half a dozen videos per month and if you’re lucky, you’ll discover something great in just one of those.

9. In ten years it will be fun to look back at your work and laugh at your inadequacies. That’s how we know we’ve made progress.

Quotables
“All video production is trying to be crap. It’s the law of entropy.”
“Things that are good are good because people are being really really tough.”
“You don’t want to be making mediocre stuff.”
“Be fierce. Be a warrior.”

Thanks for the pep talk Ira!