Real-time marketing is about right time marketing. With over 400 social media networks, it’s options and influence that powers connections. Social is about powering the network of the future. You’ll be more marketable and competitive if your social. Social enables new business models. There is no B2B or B2C. It’s just B.

Social media change agents can use humor to inspire digital storytelling. ¬†One person that continues to put smiles on people’s faces and keep audiences laughing is Baratunde Thurston, CEO of Cultivated Wit. In his keynote speech at the Social Shake-Up, he explained how to bring fun and personality to social business.

He started his speech storytelling about his great grandfather and how he learned to read. Then, he demonstrated the history of his mother and his happy moments of graduating from Harvard. His humorous storytelling woke up the crowd and I can tell you many of the attendees at the Social Shake-Up told me he was their favorite speaker they heard all week.

So what makes Baratunde such a fun storyteller? It starts with self, not the joke.  The Onion is a great example. Here are the main points from the keynote speech to digitally telling a fun story:

  1. Know Your Character, Headline
  2. Who are you?
  3. Shut Up, and listen
  4. Press, Add Play
  5. Oh, Right Tools!

Unmetric,, and¬† are just a few of the social listening tools that allow you to target people and better to listen to social data. Baratunde used Instagram hashtags to listen to fans of his book “How to Be Black.” Even a great digital leader can’t always predict what will happen, but by listening we can better understand our audience.

However, the heart of storytelling is the role of fun. ¬†This is what it means to be human. Pizzicato Privy is one such great example that actually turns bathroom noises into beautiful sounds of music. ¬†Things like Hipmunk,¬†, and¬†Magic Story Maker can grab our attention to tell stories in a funny and visual way. Children love reading the same thing over and over again. Why not think about how kids learn through stories? Provide your personality and animations to stories like you’re reading a bed-time story to a child.

Baratunde always sweats it out or plays a go-to YouTube clip of Grover the Waiter to lift his spirit if he ever gets depressed. Misdirection has always been a great tactic in humor too. Discovering a joke you weren’t expecting is a great reason why Buzzfeed has been so successful. Barantude uses social media jiu-jitsu like sending cat videos for haters that try to attack him. People need to have a level of humility, transparency, and honesty to be a better storyteller.


FINAL THOUGHT:¬†“Know yourself and be more human.”

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