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Digital Storytelling | Unlocking The Key Elements to Effective Ads

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My thesis aims to uncover the ultimate strategy behind short form visual stories, otherwise known as the digital advertisment. In this thesis, I analyze traditional storytelling, visual storytelling, and short-form visual storytelling in order to uncover the best practices advertisers

Abstract

My thesis aims to uncover the ultimate strategy behind short form visual stories, otherwise known as the digital advertisment. In this thesis, I analyze traditional storytelling, visual storytelling, and short-form visual storytelling in order to uncover the best practices advertisers should use when crafting a digital advertisement. 

Storytelling “reveals elements and images of a story while also catalyzing the imagination of the listener” (National Storytelling Network, 2017).  This tradition has two purposes for society: a neurological structure, and a social mechanism (for historic preservation, human interaction, and a vehicle for connecting with others) (Gottshcall, 2012; Scott, 2012; Paul, 2012; Woodside, 2008). 

Visual Storytelling is “using photography, illustration, video, (usually with a musical enhancement) to guide” the human brain along a plotline, and has an unlimited timeframe (Ron, 2017). There are seven key elements to effective visual storytelling: A listener/audience, an element of realism coupled with escapism, a focus on the dread of life, an element of the unknown, emotion, simplicity, and a three-part plot structure (Andrews, 2010; ProQuest, 2012; Zak, 2014; Stanton, 2014; Reagan, 2016; Jarvis, 2014; Petrick, 2014)

In the words of Sholmi Ron, from a marketing perspective, “Visual [short hand] Storytelling is a marketing strategy that communicates powerful ideas through a compelling story arc, with your customer at the heart of the story, and delivered through interactive and immersive visual media – in order to create profitable customer engagements" (Ron, 2017). This advertising strategy has four best practices: non-obvious logo placement, a comedic emotion, multiple emotional arcs, and a relevant message (Golan, 2017; Teixeira, 2015; Graves, 2017, Teixeira, 2017). These are important to understand because, in 2017, online consumers can be described as skeptical, conscious of content, individualistic, and drawn to authenticity (Teixeira, 2014). 

To supplement my findings, I conducted primary research by analyzing the 2017 Super Bowl videos against a criteria created using the best practices previously identified (in Part 1 and Part 2). Through the data collection of the 66 videos, I uncovered the most popular plotline is "fall than rise," the most popular emotions are humor, inspiration, and empathy and people tend to have a preference towards videos that are more realistic and simplistic in nature. 

In the end, I recommend that advertisers identify an authentic yet relevant message, while employing a comedic, inspirational, or empathic tone, and that they place their ads exclusively for their target market. Additionally, producers should use a fall then rise plotline (with multiple mini plot peaks and valleys), a "logo-pulsing" strategy, and a minimal amount of characters and settings to keep the audience's focus on the ad’s message.

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Date Created
2017-05

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Analyzing digital literacy demands, practices, and discourses within a library computer programming club for children

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Among researchers, educators, and other stakeholders in literacy education, there has been a growing emphasis on developing literacy pedagogies that are more responsive to the ways young people experience literacy in their everyday lives, which often make use of digital

Among researchers, educators, and other stakeholders in literacy education, there has been a growing emphasis on developing literacy pedagogies that are more responsive to the ways young people experience literacy in their everyday lives, which often make use of digital media and other technologies for exchanging meaning. This dissertation project sought to explore the nature of these digital-age literacies in the context of children learning through and about new technologies. Conducting a year-long, multimethod observational study of an out-of-school library-based program designed to engage students in self-directed learning around the domain of computer programming, this project was framed around an analysis of digital-age literacies in design, discourse, and practice. To address each of these areas, the project developed a methodology grounded in interpretive, naturalistic, and participant-observation methodologies in collaboration with a local library Code Club in a metropolitan area of the Southwestern U.S between September 2016 and December 2017. Participants in the project included a total of 47 students aged 8-14, 3 librarians, and 3 parents. Data sources for the project included (1) artifactual data, such as the designed interfaces of the online platforms students regularly engaged with, (2) observational data such as protocol-based field notes taken during and after each Code Club meeting, and (3) interview data, collected during qualitative interviews with students, parents, and library facilitators outside the program. These data sources were analyzed through a multi-method interpretive framework, including the multimodal analysis of digital artifacts, qualitative coding, and discourse analysis. The findings of the project illustrate the multidimensional nature of digital-age literacy experiences as they are rendered “on the screen” at the content level, “behind the screen” at the procedural level, and “beyond the screen” at the contextual level. The project contributes to the literature on literacy education by taking an multi-method, interdisciplinary approach to expand analytical perspectives on digital media and literacy in a digital age, while also providing an empirical account of this approach in a community-embedded context of implementation.

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Date Created
2018