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The Art of Connection and Storytelling

Weaponising Emotional Intelligence in Social Media Marketing

“People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.”

When it comes to connecting with people, the cliched saying is often emphasised. The unoriginal Theodore Roosevelt adage is usually treated with scorn, as we think it has no relevance—certainly not in the context of something as current as social media marketing.


What if I told you that you have been mistaken all along?

The most significant part of marketing on social media platforms may be an emotional connection.

When it comes to generating purchases, research has shown that connection outweighs all other factors. Within a similar timeframe, users are likely to buy twice as much as their disengaged peers. Studies also indicate a slew of additional benefits that result from developing an emotional bond: clients are more inclined to pay attention to your communications and recommend you to their friends. They’d also visit your page more frequently.

So, if the connection is king and people are motivated by their emotions, why isn’t this component of content marketing prioritised?

The truth is that connecting with others takes effort. It is all about creating content with a clear meaning. Some companies have sought to impress users with great design and editing rather than presenting their stories. They believe that the graphics distract people from reality and that there isn’t much substance to which they can relate. However, emotionally interesting content must revolve around a captivating tale.

Storytelling And The Power Of Narrative

The power of narrative has been exemplified by neuroscience and is most certainly applicable to our digital landscape.

Ancient art has always been used to share information, connect with people, and exchange ideas. Storytelling is now acknowledged as having profound impacts on our brain, especially when a primary character is included. The brain releases oxytocin, sometimes known as the love hormone, in reaction to a fascinating tale. It inspires us to be more compassionate; to reach out and assist others, as well as to collaborate with them.

Another occurrence is that we begin to reflect on the storyteller’s feelings. Our neurons fire in the same patterns as the individual who is transmitting the information. This implies that whatever we see on the screen, whether it’s a cry for aid or an emotive narrative about how someone overcame adversity, we begin to feel what they are feeling.

Dr Uri Hasson, a neurologist, has disclosed a similar concept known as ‘neural coupling.’ This includes a mental click in which the recipient’s brain synchronises with that of the orators. According to Hasson’s research, communication is one act performed by two brains. The speaker’s words have a tremendous influence on the listener’s brain, aligning it. The stronger the influence, the greater the degree of mutual understanding.

And that is why we, as marketers, must focus on creating an emotionally engaging story, at all times, across all social media platforms.

Andrey Demiyanov is Business Development & Market Research Executive at Cicero & Bernay Communication Consultancy, an independent PR agency headquartered in Dubai offering new-age public relations consultancy to the UAE and across the MENA region. |