Different Story

The other day I posted a short video from Seth Godin and wanted to expand on the idea of telling a “story”.

One of my managers often reminds us to make sure we “tell the story” of the weather.  Likely because that is what the consultants tell us to do, likely because that has been the advice for the last 40 years of TV news, and it is habit.  Many old habits are probably not the best strategy in the digital age, but that story will be for another post.

Seth is talking about a different story.

Some time ago I read an article in Inc. magazine about the huge handmade marketplace site Etsy.  One of the interesting parts of the article explained that many people who buy from the site like to know more about the artists, and one of the ways artists can achieve a connection is through a blog.

I’ve always remembered that part of the article, but I didn’t really get it until recently.  A friend, who is a painter, shared one of her works with me and it is fantastic, really really excellent.  The painting made a connection with me, but it wasn’t until some time after I had first seen the painting that my friend told me a story about what it was like to work in her studio.  She explained some of the process, what is was like working with the other artists in the space, and brought some additional flavor to the evolution of the piece.

The painting is no longer just a great painting.  It has depth and history and…the number one social media buzz word…connection.

Your users can get “Partly Cloudy, 72” anywhere.  Where will they get the “story”?

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About Kevin Selle

Chief Meteorologist, KFDX-TV. Co-host, WeatherBrains.
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3 Responses to Different Story

  1. Nate Johnson says:

    Anyone who’s watched (Next) Food Network Star on Food Network has heard this. Yes, you have to be able to cook, and yes, you have to be competent on camera. That’s not enough, though: You have to have a point of view and a story to tell, and you have to — wait for it! — connect with your viewers on more than just the topic. Lots of different ways to do this.

    Ask someone in this market about Greg Fishel, and answers like “he has a punny sense of humor” and “he loves snow” and “he’s from Pennsylvania” will be no worse than the same breath as “great forecaster”, etc. Same goes for long-time and successful mets in other markets. Yes, the Spanns and Ryans and Busbys and … of the world are great forecasters and good on the air, but that’s not the only thing people walk away with.

    • Kevin Selle says:

      Excellent points. This leads to the discussion of “people”, which in the digital age must become “some” people. You can no longer say, “people want…”. Some people want to know Greg is from PA. This leads to the idea of different data streams…a “story” for another time.

      • Nate Johnson says:

        Exactly. Food Network, as with most cable channels these days, are at best niche markets serving “some” people, not “all” people. Attracting eyeballs from “some” people is not the same task at all as attracting eyeballs from “all – some” people.

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