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What Do I Need? Comparing Digital Storytelling Tools

Matt Peters
November 29, 2018

In the past 15 years or so social media has quickly become a very important aspect of a marketing strategy to enhance a brands digital storytelling. The power of digital storytelling in today's content saturated world is more important than ever. By using digital storytelling, your brand can be separated from your competitors. Social media marketers know that a good social media strategy can make or break your brand story. 

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But doing social media right is hard. Brands need to produce thousands of pieces of content annually and just one digital storytelling project needs to be engaging enough to stand alone. 

This poses the question of how companies keep up with the growing amount of content they need to produce and stay competitive with the quality of social media posts they need to produce. Digital media content is about both quantity and quality. 

In today’s world, brands need to be utilizing social media management tools to act as a tool for marketing teams. 

There are a few ways that social media tools can help drive engagement and click through rates. 1. Helping you create a content marketing strategy. 2. Help manage the differences between varying media platforms. 3. Optimizing the scheduling process. 4. Breaking down what content is most engaging for your target audience. 

The ideal social media tool would do all of this and so much more. With rapid advances in artificial intelligence, a social media tool like Cortex can do the analysis work that would take a human their whole career in a few hours. Through streamlining the process of visual content strategy, storytelling workshops, creation, and deployment, brands are learning to move past just trying to keep up with the competition and into a position to lead change in their industry.

Learn More About Using AI to Boost Engagement Social Media Marketing Content Strategy:  

Your digital storytelling content strategy starts with content creation. In order to post the best photos and images you need to take the best photos. You need to understand what your audience wants to see and why they connect with certain things over others so that you can have the best library of images to choose from for your content posts.   

Often times we as humans can’t even put a finger on the things we’re drawn to. We simply know what we like, not necessarily the combination of features that make an image appealing. Digital storytellers use way more storytelling tools on their media than their audience might think they use.

Thousands of elements make up each and photograph. With each of those elements having a different effect on an audience, the struggle of digital storytelling strategy is figuring out which of those elements will produce the highest levels of engagement. 

The most helpful tool for visual social media strategy would be one that could tell you the types of visuals you should be filling your photo library with. 

AI can use your target audience to analyze the content they engage with at an industry wide level. The Cortex database has over 33,000 brand’s creative content and performance feedback that it can analyze in order to find what the most effective creative elements are on a given audience. For marketers, Cortex is seen as a center for digital storytelling. A brand can take Cortex's feedback and create more effective images, to enhance the digital storytelling of their brand.

Cortex uses cluster analysis to perform as a storytelling software to explain the type of content a target audience loves. Its clusters groups of content based on a variety of elements such as objects, color pallets and post copy. It can then identify the impact of each element on the post’s performance and use this information to create a brief for photographers to enhance their skills. Every brand using Cortex will need different digital storytelling tools to improve traffic , thus it's crucial for marketers and creatives to understand what works for their brand.

For example, in a brief for Visit Utah with the target audience of ski lovers, some of the elements Cortex identified were that photos with pine trees in them tend to have a 90-183% increase in performance on Instagram. Cortex uses these tools as a workshop for their clients to understand how to use digital storytelling. How a brand uses the art of storytelling on their digital media will be reflected in a customer's experience.

On the other hand, photos with groups or parties of skiers led to a 60% decrease in performance. 

Just using Cortex at a basic level to optimize content strategy led to a 23% increase in engagement on Instagram. 

Social Media Management Tool:  

Being really great on social media is more than just posting a great photograph. Engagement is based on post topic, keywords, strategic writing and hashtags in addition to the visual characteristics of a photo. Deployment strategy, which includes recognizing the differences between your social media accounts in terms of when and how often to post, is also important. This strategy will make your audience's experience more memorable.

Cortex Beach

When it comes to social media channels that cater towards digital storytelling, the most prominent are Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, and Facebook. For each brand, each one of these social media networks will have a slightly different audience that craves different content at different times. Planning these posts become a digital storytelling storyboard that your brand is trying to drive traffic towards. With all this to keep in mind you can see how this seemingly simple job of creating and scheduling posts can quickly become a complex one. 

A social media management tool helps to manage these decisions. Different tools differ in how much they assist with the social media management process. This scale goes from basic manual platforms where you can manually schedule tweets and other social media posts all in the same place, to AI platforms like Cortex that implement content and deployment strategy to help improve engagement and click through rates. 

Content and deployment suggestions are where social media AIs really shine. 

For e-commerce brands such as Heidi J Hale social media and click throughs to their product pages is vital to the survival of the company. By utilizing Cortex’s AI backed social media suggestions Heidi J Hale saw a 53% increase in Instagram engagement and an outstanding 3,403x more click throughs to their website. 

The first step in using effectively creating digital for social media is knowing when to post and to which social account to get your target audience to see it. 

Cortex has the ability to put together a deployment strategy in terms of when and where to post content. These step-by-step instructions will optimize images and posts on social media. The post planner aspect of Cortex includes the optimal number of posts for each social channel per week and the best times to post according to audience engagement data. Rather than using critical thinking about learning about your audience's behaviors, Cortex will tell you in order to produce the best digital storytelling.

The second step is putting together the best post that grabs the attention of your audience so that it doesn't get lost in a sea of other content on social media. Finding your brand's personal narrative will put your brand in a niche position when using digital storytelling. Many elements come together to form the most engaging piece of content. Social media platforms are different in terms of audience and ideal content. It’s important to recognize these differences and use each social media channel in the optimal way.

Cortex works by putting content recommendations right into a social media calendar. The recommendations include image elements and colors, keywords, and hashtags. If the user has a Getty account, cortex will even suggest ideal stock photos to effectively display digital stories. 

This means all the content creator needs to do is put those elements together and approve of the scheduling. This streamline scheduling weeks’ worth of social media content into a process that takes a few minutes.


In addition to making the process quicker and easier, it is also effective in raising social media engagement numbers. 

The luxury hotel brand St. Regis, like many other companies, relies on social media as a means of interacting with their customers and showing what they have to offer. Using Cortex as an AI tool to make post decisions and as a deployment tool they saw an increase in the number of Instagram followers by 61% and saw 72 times more engagement on Facebook. 

Cortex takes the guesswork out of scheduling and content creation and creates a storyboard. This process makes digital storytelling easier while creating your brand's stories. The scheduling and content suggestions are based on hard data, both from a brand’s social media history and that of their competition. This means that social media marketers can spend less time on the necessary volume of posts and more time creating change and interacting with their followers and their experience with your brand. 

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