“There is value in a story that is, designed to drive the simulation and to elicit the [employee’s] best performance”- Society for Human Resource Management

“Corporate storytelling is suggested to help demonstrate the importance of the corporate brand to internal and external stakeholders… as well as help a firm to bond with its employees”- Product & Brand Management

“Storytelling that starts with the persona allows us to tap into these deeper recesses, where the influence of attitudes and emotions is greater… loyalty and trust are found there”- Journal of Business Strategy

“The majority (79%) of Millennials want to work for a company that cares about how it contributes to society and 69% would refuse to work for a company that is not socially responsible”- Journal of Education For Business

“Brands can bring their CSR (corporate social responsibility) efforts to life through authentic storytelling [and] Millennials want to know what companies are doing to make the world a better place”- Center for Social Impact Communication at Georgetown University

“The audiobook market share shifted from 42% digital copy sales in 2009 to 87% digital copy sales in 2017”- Audio Publishers Association

Millennials are more technologically advanced than any previous generation [and] survey data has shown a correlation between age and reading preferences [where] younger people listen to more audiobooks than older Americans”- State University of New York

“Researchers have shown that storytelling strengthens the connections consumers have to brands, so that to a great extent what a brand means to a consumer is based . . . on the narratives he or she has constructed that incorporate the brand.”- Journal of Business Strategy

“64% of Millennials consider a company’s social commitments when taking jobs and will not work for a company if they do not have strong corporate social responsibility (CSR) values”- Cone Communications

“19% [of Millennials] say they have paid in the last year for a subscription service for eBooks or audiobooks such as Kindle Unlimited or Audible”- American Press Institute

“Employees have a deeper affiliation with the message through organizational storytelling due to aligning stories with their own experiences and understanding”- International Journal of Business and Social Science

“The corporate world cannot ignore the demands and expectations of Millennials, who are devout in their desire to associate with companies aligned with their values”- Center for Social Impact Communication at Georgetown University

“Storytelling is essential to successful branding, since your brand is the sum of all your corporate behaviors and communications that inform your customers’ experiences with your product or company”- The Journal of Business Strategy

“83% of Millennials would be more loyal to a company that allows them to contribute to social and environmental issues”- Cone Communications

“Maximizing success through onboarding by storytelling during orientations, [helps employees understand] the company's culture and values [and] its goals and history”- Society for Human Resource Management

“There are currently about 1000% more titles published since 2011”- Audio Publishers Association

“[the way employees are on-boarded] sets the tone for the culture of a place, the people, and the values of a new institution and can have a significant impact on employees’ sense of belonging”- Journal of Research, Assessment, and Practice in Higher Education

“As technology evolves, people have more options available to them, which may explain why [reports] found younger adults to be more likely to opt for audiobooks and the multi-tasking they enable”- Forbes

“A focus on social responsibility is particularly important to attract, retain, and increase the commitment and engagement of Millennial employees and talented women”- Center for Creative Leadership

“When it comes to digital storytelling for branding, there is, a more positive attitude towards the company when the employer branding message is using digital storytelling”- Management Dynamic in the Knowledge Economy Journal

“Over 71 thousand audiobook titles (were) published in 2020, a 39% growth between previous years”- Statista

“A poor cultural fit is frequently cited as one of the main reasons [an employee] decides to leave an organization… defining the organization's culture through storytelling should start with branding of the organization and continue through the interview and onboarding process”- Physician Executive Communication Journal

“Audiobooks have had a big shift in popularity in 2018 where for the first time, “a full half of all Americans ages 12 and older have listened to an audiobook, up from 44% last year”- Forbes

“Audiobook sales revenue has been on a steep rise since 2018, reaching 1.3 billion USD in 2020”- Statista

“[onboarding] can also aid employees in identifying values congruence which is critical to career contentment and commitment which can significantly impact retention to both the field and the institution long-term” - Journal of Research, Assessment, and Practice in Higher Education

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Like Ghost Writing, Business Audio Theatre is By the Word

PLAYWRITING AND PRODUCTION

Business Audio Theatre November 6, 2020 19 5


Background
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Business Audio Theatre is a new way to preserve legacy, build brands, and create engagement. It is an audiobook of the founder’s stories presented through seminal scenes that depict their history, pivotal moments, and guiding principles. The storytelling dialogue is not just narrated, it’s performed by a full cast of professional actors, and includes sound effects and music. Listen to examples of this new award-winning approach to business edutainment.

Once founders appreciate the value of Business Audio Theatre, they typically ask three important questions: “How is it valued?” “How long does it run?” and “What is the production time?”

Like ghostwriting, the financial investment is based on the number of words. The number of words is based on the duration of the performance. And the duration of the performance is based on the story the founder wants to present.

The actual process goes through three main phases that require the participation of the founder:

Playwriting

A big influence on how long the playwriting takes is the playwright’s access to the founder and contributors. The playwright not only needs to get the story down but needs to get the founder’s approval and contributor’s signoffs. That’s a function of the founder’s and contributor’s time commitment to the playwriting and approval process.

And again, the time involved is based on the length of the production. For instance, for every hour of performance play time, the founder and contributors may have to commit to up to two hours of interview and approval time.  The more compressed these interview and approval event are, the shorter the playwriting time.

Obviously, if the story is already written and just needs to be adopted to an audio play, that would significantly reduce the time commitment by the founder. But a pre-written story is not required and in many cases, going direct to script may be more desirable and efficient.

Casting

Once again, the founder will have to set aside time to review, adjust, and approve the actors who voice the characters. This involves the founder’s decisions and suggestion about style, delivery, and emphasis. But once that’s done, the audio play can go into production.

Production

Now that the script is complete, approved, and casted, the actual production can take place. This is a relatively straight forward process executed by a professional director, actors, sound effects engineers, editors, and musical score composers.

Once the initial production is complete, the founder will have to commit to a review process where any adjustments can be made followed by final approval and the ultimate deliverable.

Investment

The word count is estimated based on the duration of the story. The value is based on the word count. But the investment is more than the cost of writing and production. The investment is also an investment in time to get the story down, approve the script, make key decisions, approve the actors, sound effects, music, and the final approval.

The result is a living story that lasts forever, a story the founder is proud of, a story that conveys the founder’s principles, and a story that listeners can identify with …recall and apply.

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