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Digital Storytelling | Unlocking The Key Elements to Effective Ads

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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

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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Sexualization of Young Girls

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Marketers today have found a way to expose sexualized content to young girls. Intentional or not, girls are taking notice of it and it shows in the increasing numbers of mental and physical disorders. This thesis attempts to synthesis previous

Marketers today have found a way to expose sexualized content to young girls. Intentional or not, girls are taking notice of it and it shows in the increasing numbers of mental and physical disorders. This thesis attempts to synthesis previous research studies and current examples of sexual objectification of women in the hopes to create more awareness on the sexualization of girls. Several aspect play a significant role in shaping young girls including how females are portrayed in the media, how the beauty standards continue to change with the current trends, and how parents are playing an influential role in their children's lives. I will propose some recommendations about what we, as a society, can do to help parents and children grow up in this hyper sexualized world.

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Date Created
2016-05

A Content and Discourse Analysis of California's Proposition 22: What it means for the Future of the Gig Economy

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For this thesis, I analyzed the discourse and content of Proposition 22, a California law which defined all workers utilizing gig-based apps to sell services as independent contractors meaning they were not legally entitled to certain protections such as minimum

For this thesis, I analyzed the discourse and content of Proposition 22, a California law which defined all workers utilizing gig-based apps to sell services as independent contractors meaning they were not legally entitled to certain protections such as minimum wage. The law was overturned in court in 2020, however, the advertisements in favor of and discourse behind the law has had a continued impact on all workers. Because of this it is important to examine and conceptualize the ideologies behind the law in order to understand how it was able to pass in a state which tends to vote in favor of increasing employee rights and regulation of industries. To do so, I utilized two methods of analysis, a discourse analysis of legal documents and a content analysis of advertisements. The former revolves around analyzing the discourse and ideologies around two versions of the legislation which were shown to the public, while the latter analysis categorizes and examines the implications of various advertisements utilized by companies to support the proposition. Ultimately, gig companies created an effective campaign that was able to repackage neoliberal deregulation for the general public while actively misrepresenting information around the law leading to long lasting effects that continue to harm workers while lining the pockets of investors despite its overturning.

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Date Created
2022-05