soapbox:-here’s-why-b2b-should-get-better-at-episodic-storytelling

Trends in storytelling generally stem from media and entertainment. Once these early adopters demonstrate success, edgy B2C brands borrow with pride. Then, B2B players catch the wind and test out the tactic for themselves.

And so it goes with episodic storytelling. Streaming services and premium television publishers are purposefully presenting stories as episodes to keep audiences coming back for more. It works for Disney . It works for B2C brands. And, as more marketers are beginning to realize, it works for B2B brands.

Episodic content is a familiar tactic among audiences and drives tremendous engagement. You need to:

  • Deliver high value in a shorter than usual timespan. You want your audience to think, “That was interesting, and it didn’t take too long,” and they’ll be willing to come back for more.
  • Provide a clear call-to-action at the end of the series. If you have asked someone for this much of their time, and they have cared enough to give it, be clear on what should happen next.
  • Think about why you love your favorite series. You can’t get enough of “The Mandalorian” because you are invested in the characters. A nonfiction narrative usually works better than a made-up story for B2B brands, but you can still use storytelling best practices. Establish strong character bonds so people are invested, and end episodes with unanswered questions – cliffhangers – but don’t forget to resolve them quickly.

Episodic storytelling could mean the continuation of the same plotline, or serial storytelling link “Black Mirror,” in which each episode introduces new characters. Either way, quality, character-driven storytelling will reap the best results. Tips for success include:

  • Let go of fear! Trust that your plot and your characters will deliver real value.
  • Learn from B2B brands that are doing this right. MailChimp’s animated series, “Outer Monologue,” Intel’s drone and AI series, “Preserving a Legacy” and Zarius’ “Marketing Unboxed” are good examples.
  • Think beyond video. Episodic storytelling works in virtually all mediums, including blog posts and podcasts. In fact, B2B podcasting will explode in 2020.

All brands will need to morph into media companies if they want to survive. B2B marketers may be hesitant to try episodic storytelling, but I have seen content fail because the story was delivered all at once when it would have been better told in installments. Audiences like episodic storytelling. It is time for B2B marketers to master it.

Soapbox is a special feature for marketers in our community to share their observations and opinions about our industry. You can submit your own here.


Opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Marketing Land. Staff authors are listed here.



About The Author

Erin Craft is vice president and managing director of strategic creative at Centerline Digital. She double-majored in business management and microbiology, so, naturally, she took a year off after college to focus on photography and work with horses. When she decided field research wasn’t for her, she found the perfect place for a scientific mind who admired a well-told story at Centerline. Over a decade later she continues working to master marketing at the intersection of technology and humans. Erin relishes the daily opportunity to switch between right- and left-brain approaches to solve communications challenges from a variety of different angles. With her unique blend of experience, an eye toward creativity, a tight grasp on budgetary concerns and old-fashioned common sense, she guides accounts to measurable success.



143 comments

  1. Hi there would you mind stating which blog platform
    you’re using? I’m going to start my own blog in the near future but I’m having a
    difficult time selecting between BlogEngine/Wordpress/B2evolution and Drupal.
    The reason I ask is because your design and style seems different then most
    blogs and I’m looking for something unique.
    P.S Sorry for being off-topic but I had to ask!

  2. Hi there! I just want to offer you a huge thumbs up for your great information you have here on this post.
    I am coming back to your website for more soon.

  3. I’m extremely impressed with your writing skills as
    well as with the layout on your blog. Is this a paid theme or did
    you modify it yourself? Anyway keep up the nice quality
    writing, it’s rare to see a nice blog like this one nowadays.

  4. Its like you read my mind! You seem to know so much about this, like you wrote the book in it or something.
    I think that you could do with some pics to drive the message home a bit, but other than that, this
    is excellent blog. A fantastic read. I will certainly be back.

  5. I have read so many articles or reviews on the topic of the blogger lovers except this paragraph is genuinely a pleasant article, keep it up.

  6. Do you have a spam issue on this website; I also am a blogger, and I was wanting to know your
    situation; we have created some nice methods and we are looking to swap methods with other folks,
    be sure to shoot me an email if interested.

  7. Hi! I’ve been following your site for a long time now and finally got the
    courage to go ahead and give you a shout out from Porter Texas!
    Just wanted to mention keep up the excellent work!

  8. Wonderful article! That is the kind of information that should be shared around the internet.
    Disgrace on Google for now not positioning this put up upper!
    Come on over and talk over with my site . Thanks
    =)

  9. What’s Happening i am new to this, I stumbled upon this I’ve found It absolutely useful and it
    has aided me out loads. I hope to give a contribution & assist other
    users like its helped me. Great job.

  10. I’ve been surfing online more than 4 hours today, yet I never found
    any interesting article like yours. It’s pretty worth enough for me.

    In my opinion, if all website owners and bloggers made good
    content as you did, the net will be a lot more useful than ever before.

  11. of course like your web site but you need to take a look at the spelling on several of
    your posts. Several of them are rife with spelling problems and I find it
    very bothersome to tell the truth however I will definitely come back again.

  12. No matter if some one searches for his vital thing, therefore he/she desires to be available that in detail, so that thing is maintained over here.

  13. I was suggested this blog via my cousin. I’m now not sure whether or not this submit is written by way of him as no one else realize such distinctive approximately my trouble.
    You are wonderful! Thanks!

  14. It’s the best time to make a few plans for the future and it is time
    to be happy. I’ve read this submit and if I may just I wish to recommend you some interesting things
    or tips. Perhaps you could write subsequent articles referring to this article.
    I want to learn even more issues about it!

  15. Thank you, I’ve just been looking for information approximately this
    topic for ages and yours is the greatest
    I have discovered so far. But, what concerning the bottom line?
    Are you certain concerning the supply?

  16. I am extremely impressed with your writing skills as well as with the
    layout on your weblog. Is this a paid theme or did you modify it
    yourself? Either way keep up the nice quality writing, it’s rare to see a nice blog like
    this one these days.

  17. I was excited to discover this website. I wanted to thank
    you for your time for this wonderful read!! I definitely liked every little bit of it and i also
    have you saved as a favorite to check out new stuff in your web site.

  18. It is perfect time to make some plans for the long
    run and it is time to be happy. I have read this post and
    if I may I desire to counsel you few interesting things or tips.
    Perhaps you could write subsequent articles referring to this article.
    I desire to learn more issues about it!

  19. Hi there! This is kind of off topic but I need some help from an established blog.
    Is it tough to set up your own blog? I’m not very techincal but I
    can figure things out pretty fast. I’m thinking about creating my own but I’m not sure where to start.
    Do you have any ideas or suggestions? Thank you

  20. My brother recommended I might like this blog. He was once totally right.
    This publish truly made my day. You can not imagine just how so much time I had spent
    for this info! Thanks!

  21. My family all the time say that I am killing my time here at web, except I know I am getting familiarity every day by reading thes good articles.

  22. I am really loving the theme/design of your weblog.
    Do you ever run into any web browser compatibility problems?
    A few of my blog readers have complained about my website not working correctly in Explorer but looks great in Opera.
    Do you have any advice to help fix this issue?

  23. I loved as much as you’ll receive carried out right here.
    The sketch is tasteful, your authored material stylish.
    nonetheless, you command get got an nervousness over that you wish be
    delivering the following. unwell unquestionably come more formerly again as exactly
    the same nearly a lot often inside case you shield this
    increase.

  24. I will right away grab your rss as I can’t find your e-mail
    subscription hyperlink or newsletter service. Do you have any?
    Kindly allow me recognize so that I may subscribe. Thanks.

  25. Please let me know if you’re looking for a article author for your
    blog. You have some really great posts and I believe I would be a
    good asset. If you ever want to take some of the
    load off, I’d absolutely love to write some material for your blog in exchange for a link
    back to mine. Please shoot me an email if interested.
    Regards!

  26. you’re in point of fact a excellent webmaster. The web site loading velocity is incredible.
    It sort of feels that you are doing any unique trick. Also, The contents are masterpiece.

    you have done a excellent activity in this subject!

  27. Hello everyone, it’s my first visit at this web page, and article is really fruitful for me,
    keep up posting these posts.

  28. I was wondering if you ever thought of changing the layout
    of your site? Its very well written; I love what youve got to say.

    But maybe you could a little more in the way of content so people
    could connect with it better. Youve got an awful
    lot of text for only having 1 or 2 images. Maybe you could space it out better?

  29. This design is steller! You definitely know how
    to keep a reader entertained. Between your wit and your videos,
    I was almost moved to start my own blog (well, almost…HaHa!) Great job.
    I really enjoyed what you had to say, and more than that,
    how you presented it. Too cool!

  30. It’s in fact very difficult in this full of activity life to listen news on Television, thus I
    just use internet for that reason, and obtain the most recent
    news.

  31. Hello! This post could not be written any better!
    Reading through this post reminds me of my old room mate!
    He always kept chatting about this. I will
    forward this page to him. Fairly certain he will have a good read.

    Thanks for sharing!

  32. It’s actually a great and helpful piece of information. I’m glad that you shared this helpful info with us.

    Please keep us informed like this. Thanks for sharing.

  33. Definitely believe that which you stated. Your favorite reason seemed to be on the net the simplest thing to be aware of.

    I say to you, I certainly get annoyed while people consider worries that they plainly don’t know about.
    You managed to hit the nail upon the top as well as defined out the whole thing without
    having side effect , people can take a signal. Will probably be back to get more.
    Thanks

  34. hello there and thank you for your information – I’ve definitely picked up anything new from right here.
    I did however expertise several technical issues using
    this web site, as I experienced to reload the website lots of
    times previous to I could get it to load correctly. I had been wondering if your web host is OK?
    Not that I’m complaining, but slow loading instances times
    will very frequently affect your placement in google and could damage your quality score if ads and marketing
    with Adwords. Anyway I am adding this RSS to my
    email and could look out for much more of your respective
    exciting content. Ensure that you update this again soon.

  35. I am really loving the theme/design of your website. Do you ever run into
    any web browser compatibility problems? A number of my blog audience have complained about
    my website not working correctly in Explorer but looks great in Opera.
    Do you have any ideas to help fix this issue?

  36. I have been surfing on-line greater than three hours nowadays, yet I never discovered
    any fascinating article like yours. It’s pretty value sufficient for me.
    In my opinion, if all site owners and bloggers made good
    content material as you probably did, the internet can be a lot more
    useful than ever before.

  37. When I originally commented I clicked the “Notify me when new comments are added” checkbox and now each time a comment is added I get several emails with the same
    comment. Is there any way you can remove me from that service?
    Thank you!

  38. I believe this is one of the most significant information for me.
    And i’m satisfied studying your article. But want to remark on few basic issues, The web site taste is perfect, the articles is truly excellent : D.
    Good job, cheers

  39. I think what you composed was actually very logical.
    However, what about this? suppose you were to create a awesome post title?
    I am not saying your information isn’t good., however
    suppose you added something to possibly grab a person’s attention?
    I mean Soapbox: Here’s why B2B should get better at episodic storytelling –
    Pavvy Designs is a little plain. You could peek at Yahoo’s front page and
    see how they create news titles to get viewers interested.
    You might try adding a video or a picture or two
    to grab readers excited about everything’ve written. In my opinion, it would bring
    your website a little bit more interesting.

  40. Hello There. I discovered your weblog the usage of msn. That is a really neatly written article.
    I’ll make sure to bookmark it and come back to read extra of
    your helpful information. Thanks for the post.
    I will definitely return.

  41. You really make it seem so easy with your presentation but I find this topic
    to be really something that I think I would never understand.
    It seems too complex and extremely broad for
    me. I am looking forward for your next post,
    I will try to get the hang of it!

  42. Pretty nice post. I just stumbled upon your blog
    and wanted to mention that I’ve truly loved browsing your
    blog posts. In any case I will be subscribing on your feed and I am hoping you
    write again very soon!

  43. Thanks for the marvelous posting! I certainly enjoyed reading
    it, you could be a great author.I will make certain to bookmark
    your blog and may come back at some point. I want
    to encourage you continue your great writing, have
    a nice afternoon!

  44. I really love your blog.. Great colors & theme.
    Did you make this amazing site yourself?
    Please reply back as I’m looking to create my own blog and would like
    to find out where you got this from or what the theme is called.
    Cheers!

  45. Its like you read my mind! You seem to understand
    so much about this, like you wrote the book in it or something.
    I think that you simply could do with some percent to drive the message house a little bit, but other than that,
    this is great blog. An excellent read. I’ll definitely be back.

  46. Thank you for the auspicious writeup. It in fact was a amusement account it.
    Look advanced to more added agreeable from you! By the
    way, how can we communicate?

  47. Write more, thats all I have to say. Literally, it seems as though you relied on the
    video to make your point. You clearly know what youre talking about, why waste your intelligence on just posting videos to your weblog
    when you could be giving us something informative to read?

  48. hello there and thank you for your info – I have certainly picked up anything
    new from right here. I did however expertise several technical issues using this site, as
    I experienced to reload the site many times previous to I could get it to
    load properly. I had been wondering if your hosting is OK?

    Not that I am complaining, but slow loading instances times will
    often affect your placement in google and could damage your high-quality score if ads and marketing with Adwords.

    Well I’m adding this RSS to my e-mail and can look out for a lot more of
    your respective intriguing content. Ensure that you
    update this again soon.

  49. Hello! I just wanted to ask if you ever have any problems with hackers?

    My last blog (wordpress) was hacked and I ended up losing a few months
    of hard work due to no data backup. Do you have any methods
    to stop hackers?

  50. When I initially commented I appear to have clicked the -Notify me when new
    comments are added- checkbox and from now on whenever
    a comment is added I recieve four emails with the exact same comment.
    Perhaps there is a means you can remove me from
    that service? Thanks!

  51. Hi everyone, it’s my first pay a visit at this web page, and post is actually fruitful in support of me,
    keep up posting these types of content.

  52. I have read so many articles regarding the blogger lovers however this article is actually
    a fastidious piece of writing, keep it up.

  53. An impressive share! I have just forwarded this onto a co-worker
    who had been conducting a little research on this.

    And he in fact bought me lunch simply because I
    found it for him… lol. So let me reword this…. Thanks for the meal!!

    But yeah, thanks for spending the time to discuss this subject here on your website.

  54. Good post. I learn something totally new and challenging
    on websites I stumbleupon every day. It’s always exciting to read articles from other authors and practice a little something from other sites.

  55. Hey There. I discovered your weblog the usage of msn. This is an extremely smartly written article.
    I will be sure to bookmark it and return to read extra of your useful info.
    Thank you for the post. I’ll definitely return.

  56. Very good blog! Do you have any helpful hints for aspiring writers?
    I’m hoping to start my own blog soon but I’m a little lost on everything.
    Would you advise starting with a free platform like WordPress or
    go for a paid option? There are so many choices out there that I’m totally
    confused .. Any ideas? Thanks a lot!

  57. Excellent post. I used to be checking continuously this weblog and I am impressed!
    Very useful information specially the ultimate part :
    ) I maintain such information a lot. I used to be looking for this certain info for a very
    long time. Thank you and best of luck.

  58. Howdy very cool website!! Man .. Excellent ..
    Amazing .. I will bookmark your blog and take the feeds additionally?
    I am satisfied to search out numerous useful information right here in the publish, we need work out extra techniques in this regard, thanks
    for sharing. . . . . .

  59. Hey there! Do you know if they make any plugins to safeguard
    against hackers? I’m kinda paranoid about losing everything I’ve
    worked hard on. Any recommendations?

  60. Its like you read my mind! You seem to know a lot about this,
    like you wrote the book in it or something.
    I think that you could do with some pics to drive the message home a little bit, but other than that, this is
    fantastic blog. A great read. I’ll definitely be back.

  61. Hi there, this weekend is pleasant in favor of me, for
    the reason that this occasion i am reading this impressive educational article
    here at my home.

  62. Just desire to say your article is as surprising.
    The clarity in your post is simply great and i can assume you’re an expert
    on this subject. Fine with your permission allow me
    to grab your RSS feed to keep up to date with forthcoming post.

    Thanks a million and please continue the enjoyable work.

  63. Hey I know this is off topic but I was wondering if you
    knew of any widgets I could add to my blog that automatically tweet my
    newest twitter updates. I’ve been looking for a
    plug-in like this for quite some time and was hoping maybe you would have some experience with something like this.
    Please let me know if you run into anything. I truly enjoy reading your blog and I look forward to your new updates.

  64. Hi there! I realize this is kind of off-topic but I needed
    to ask. Does operating a well-established blog such as yours require a massive amount work?
    I’m completely new to running a blog however
    I do write in my diary everyday. I’d like to start a blog so I can easily share my own experience and views online.
    Please let me know if you have any kind of suggestions or tips for new aspiring blog
    owners. Thankyou!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.