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Here’s How to Combine Storytelling and Data to Produce Persuasive Content

Stashed in: Awesome, SEO, Stories, Mad Men!, Content is king., @aaker

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Jennifer Aaker says stories are up to 22 times more memorable than facts:

Jennifer Aaker, a social psychologist and professor at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business, cites a study in which students were asked to present a one-minute persuasive pitch to their class members. Each pitch included an average of 2.5 statistics. Only one of those pitches included a story. Ten minutes later, the researcher asked the students to pull out a sheet of paper and write down every idea they remembered. Only 5% of the students remembered a statistic; 63% of the students remembered the story.

For most people, numbers aren’t memorable. Stories are.

Example of a good story is Don Draper's Carousel pitch on Mad Men:

We make decisions primarily with emotion:

Numerous studies have shown that stories aren’t only more effective in making a message memorable, they’re also more emotionally persuasive. Pair this with research that shows we make decisions primarily with emotion (using logic to justify them later), and you have the power of story in a nutshell.

So: put your data into a meaningful, visual story context that literally illustrates your point.

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