5 ways to infuse emotion into your storytelling

Avoid deluging your audiences with information, no matter how cerebral they might be. Woo the hearts, and minds will follow. Here are key takeaways from our conference at Disneyland.

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Will AI take your job one day? Not if you tell emotional stories that connect audiences to your brand.

So says Miri Rodriguez, Microsoft storyteller and keynoter at Ragan’s “Brand Storytelling and Content Marketing Conference” at Disneyland in Anaheim, California.

“AI will be writing bestselling books by 2024,” she told more than 250 rapt listeners in the Mouse House, “but we can separate and elevate our stories by focusing on human empathy.”

Here are five insights from the Disneyland conference to help you do just that:

1. Key on people’s core needs. “Storytelling isn’t opinions, data, facts or assertions,” says Rodriguez. “It’s also not posting content on social media and calling them ‘stories.’”

Instead, it’s the emotional transfer of information through character, plot and conclusion. “When it’s done right, dopamine fires and it prompts action,” she says.

The movie “Coco,” she says, “inspired my son to act. He wanted me to buy him a guitar right after watching it.”

Her advice: Reach audiences through their hearts rather than going straight at their heads. “Ask yourself instead what emotions you’re seeking to evoke,” she says.

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