Monday, December 02, 2013

TEDx Talk on Digital Storytelling Inspires Millennials and Beyond

The effective use of social media today is by many accounts still a “trending topic.”  The population of digital natives, or more commonly referred to as Millennials, the population generally born between 1980 and 2000, typically is the group we most focus on. Certainly people of all ages use social media, but perhaps not as much as the 18-24 year old section of the world.

With such an immense amount of media messages being focused on this group, or content being created by this same group, the question becomes, “What is the most effective way of getting compelling and engaging content to be read or acknowledged by our targeted population, namely Millennials.”

One proven technique is to find relevant, authentic, and emotional digital stories which connect with the audience.  With so many competing messages being disseminated, perhaps the best strategy to engage Millennials audiences and beyond is to find, create, and disseminate stories that people can connect with. And by strategically disseminating these stories through social media outlets, we can disseminate them even further, making our original message more sustainable.

This topic was part of a recent TEDx Talk held at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse.  The talk was entitled, “Digital Storytelling- Changing People, Perceptions, and Lives.”  A series of TEDx talks were held at this event with the general theme of “Turning Points.” You can view Jim's presentation here:

Jim Jorstad, a CNN iReport 2013 Spirit Award winner took the audience through an eighteen minute journey of how digital storytelling can help audiences emotionally connect with a personal message and experience. As Jim points out, “We need to ‘dive deep’ into getting the story which resides in each of us. While we all have technology at our finger tips, many of us have become disconnected with one another, merely because we have access to technology.”

Jorstad uses CNN iReporting to bring engaging and emotional stories to the world to help us learn about people’s lives, their perceptions, and how we can change.

His citizen journalism has inspired students, teachers, and social movements.  As he points out, “When I started reporting my goal was 10,000 views. Now, by creating more engaging content and using social media outlets, I have nearly 1 million views.  And when you look at the data, a million people very large audience you can connect with.” What is your story?