Is Brandtelling limited or expanded by the medium you use? What does this mean to your story?
In 1964, Marshall McLuhan penned the phrase “the medium is the message” to highlight the influence that a medium exerts over the content it conveys. He used a light bulb as an analogy for his theory – while it doesn’t carry content, he said:
I don’t agree with all of McLuhan’s theories and assertions – I recall seeing a poster that teased, “McLuhan thought that television would replace reading and he wrote a lot of books to prove it.” But I do agree that the environment for your story will have an effect on the behavior of your audience.
Think about seeing a movie first hand and then having a friend retell the movie to you. Or your nine year old. The information changes, there may be new emphasis on a different part of the story. It may sound like a different story altogether.
Steve Rubel at micropersuasion discusses the influence of renting versus buying your social media (see that word medium captured in its plural) and it’s an apt way to consider this idea as well.
Now think about brandtelling in the age of Twitter and Facebook. What does this mean for your story? Can your story be reliably remembered, repeated and rewarded? What will need to be changed? What will be kept or discarded as your story is “shared” by others?