We’ve reached a point in time where we have attention spans like goldfish and good UX is therefore an expectation, not a bonus. These days, a frustrating user experience will quickly have your audience going elsewhere which makes it crucial that you stand out with seamless UX coupled with a memorable backstory. Cue storytelling.

Unleash the power of Storytelling

Psychology proves that our brains are hardwired to process and store information in the form of stories. To describe this psychological mechanism briefly and to-the-point: we process stories more deeply than we process other kinds of material. This helps us remember them. So, when we hear that “once upon a time” there was a certain character in such and such place, our minds are immediately transported to this imaginary scene. In fact, stories are irresistible to the human mind because they activate our imaginations and so we have no choice but to follow the mental movies created in our heads. The information we learn through stories sticks with us in ways that listicles, facts, and statistics just don’t. 

Why does all of this storytelling stuff matter for your website? It matters when you want to make an impact. Here are several ways you can make your website content unforgettable to your audience:

Storytelling is a powerful tool for understanding, communicating, and inspiring ‘human-ness’ on your website.

1. Immerse your audience in a story

A well-told story is something that will stick in your audience’s mind for years to come. Every word needs to create a clear mental picture of the situation you are describing. The rich detail we get from descriptions of characters, locations, and events — and relating it all back to our own experiences — help us personally connect with information or ideas. This will turn your story into a mental movie that your audience cannot help but engage in and remember for years to come. 

2. Tell a personal story

Your characters are at the heart of any story and a personal tale of their fortunes and misfortunes are what captivate your audience and make them want to laugh, cry or rejoice. You must provide enough detail to bring the character to life in the minds of those in the audience so they can identify with them and feel engaged.

3. Create suspense

Those who love to watch movies or read books know that a good story always has a conflict and a plot. These two elements are what make a good story into a roller coaster ride that keeps your readers at the edge of their seats, asking themselves, “What will happen next?“

There are several devices that can increase the level of suspense of your story. One way is to tell a story chronologically and build up to a climactic conclusion. Another way is to plop the reader right in the middle of the action and then go backwards in time to reveal how all of this occurred.

4. Build up to a S.T.A.R. moment

A S.T.A.R. moment is a “Something They’ll Always Remember” event that is so dramatic that your audience will be talking about it weeks later. In storytelling, this can come in the form of a dramatization, a twist to the story or shocking statistics that will make your audience want to take action and get involved. 

5. End with a positive takeaway

In storytelling, most characters end up living ‘’happily ever after’’. Even though this fairytale ending is far from true in the real world, the job you are doing as a non-for profit organisation does provide many happy endings to people’s lives. End your story by painting a picture of how your characters life has changed for the better to demonstrate the impact you have, because, in the end, this is your key takeaway message. Always follow up with a call to action button that drives your audience to engage with your cause.

Read more about how to create a call to action button