When Jessica Curry took her daughter Parker to the National Portrait Gallery to see the recently installed portrait of Michelle Obama, a fellow museumgoer was struck by the little girl’s expression. Ben Hines snapped a photo with his cell phone and later posted the photo on Facebook.
We don't often consider the ethics of telling our story. Mother's Day email reminders opened my eyes to the challenges of storytelling in the digital age. Not long after my mom died in April last year, an email came from the local florist reminding me to send flowers.
The stars of this year’s Super Bowl weren’t the Broncos and Seahawks but the adorable Labrador puppy and muscular Clydesdale featured in a 60-second Budweiser beer commercial. At last count, the ad had more than 40 million views on YouTube. Pollster Frank Luntz noted on CBS This Morning that women and men in a focus group he arranged to watch the big game ads were deeply moved by it, some to tears. So why is this commercial so powerful?
While there was no stated theme at the recent Communications Network Fall Conference, virtually every plenary and break out session focused in some way or another on the need to tell our stories better for more effective communications. I suppose this theme isn't surprising among professional communicators but it was fascinating how much of a struggle it seems to be for a group of people, who more than most, really understand storytelling.
Everyone, it seems, is jumping on the storytelling bandwagon, and with good reason. Storytelling is a powerful communications tool that taps into both our emotions and our minds' most effective way of accepting and retaining information.
With just a few words, prominent geologist and Interim President of CUNY College of Staten Island William Fritz vividly summed up why Hurricane Sandy hit the island borough in the middle of New York Harbor so hard: “We’ve hardscaped our sponge.”
E. B. White’s masterpiece, Charlotte’s Web, recently turned 60. This children’s fable about Wilbur the pig and Charlotte the spider, who saves him from becoming Christmas dinner, honors friendship, ingenuity, love, and loss.
Earlier this week, I did a training for a company’s research and PR staff on how to improve their writing. In that presentation, I included my 10 Commandments of Good Writing. Number Six: Thou Shalt Show ‘Em Not Just Tell “Em.
The Twittersphere was abuzz today with several posts about a website called One Sentence. It’s a place where brevity and a quick trip to the essence of the story is celebrated and honored.