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September 13, 2019

Why “Long Live the Local” is effective storytelling

Written by Kristen Kalupski
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The term “storytelling” gets tossed around a lot in the advertising industry to the point where it has lost its meaning. But in a recent article in The Drum, our own Simon Gittings reminds us of what real storytelling in advertising looks like: creating an emotional connection with a strong narrative.

About the Drum

With more than 1 million unique monthly visitors, The Drum is a major publication and largely trusted for marketing, advertising, and communication news in both the United Kingdom and the United States. The Drum’s Creative Director’s Choice gives creative directors an opportunity to discuss great campaigns making a difference. In a recent Creative Director’s Choice, Simon, creative director in our London office, discusses why Britain’s Beer Alliance’s (BBA) “Long Live the Local” campaign moves him.

What Is Britain’s Beer Alliance?

Here’s the context behind Simon’s guest column in Creative Director’s Choice: the BBA is urging UK citizens to sign a petition to cut a duty on beer. Opponents of the beer duty fear that it will hurt local pubs to the point of putting them out of business. As the Drum reports,

The tax the government puts on beer has risen by 39% in the last 10 years, which means the UK now pays three times more tax than the EU average and 14 times more than Germans. Pubs across the country have been highlighting high beer tax is bad for business, with three pubs a day closing their doors for good.

So far the BBA has gotten nearly 160,000 people (and counting) people to sign the petition as part of Long Live the Local. In his column, Simon explains how a long-form video with a powerful story has been a catalyst.

How Did Britain’s Beer Alliance Employ Effective Storytelling?

The predictable choice for the BBA would have been a simple, in-your-face call to action. But as Simon discusses, the BBA instead decided to trust that its audience would respond emotionally to a long-form story. Through a video, the BBA shares the story of Horns Lodge Inn, which closed recently after being open for more than 250 years.

It’s a powerful story. The images of the pub and the people who used to go there evoke a universal feeling of belonging and sharing fellowship in a warm, comfortable pub. The Horns Lodge Inn makes you immediately think of your favorite place to hang out and have a beer – your home away from home. As Simon remarks, “I love drinking beer in the pub. I feel sad when I see yet another pub closing.”

And in the video, you see the aftermath of the closing of the Horns Lodge Inn: an empty, boarded up shell of a once-vibrant place.

The video also works because it’s a human story. You see the people who made Horns Lodge Inn their favorite pub. They share their own stories. They are ordinary folk like you and me. Watching the video even, I feel sad for their loss. Their loss feels like my loss, even though I live more than 5,000 miles away.

Contact Investis Digital

Please spend a few minutes watching the video and Simon’s analysis to experience what storytelling looks, sounds, and feels like. And contact Investis Digital for insight into how to make your brand’s story sing. Our own Connected Content approach helps businesses do just that across multiple channels.

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