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Brevity Meet Fist: Being Hemingway in the Age of TikTok - Social Media Video Production

Updated: Dec 10, 2023


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The original Social Media, Ernest Hemingway holding court at a bar in Key West

“Write drunk. Edit sober.”

- Ernest Hemingway


Ernest Hemingway, likely eight daiquiris deep under a Key West palapa, set a standard that still echoes in today’s social media marketing. His brief, sharp prose foretold today's quick-fire storytelling, but for us to be most effective, it's his cardinal tenet we must master.


The Myth of Instant Gratification


Amidst the whirlwind of TikTok frenzies and the dance of Instagram Reels, digital storytelling is emerging, rugged and unvarnished, a revolutionary art in its own right. The wave of short-form videos isn't merely a nod to our ever-evolving media appetites; it's a brazen challenge to the ingenuity of video marketing strategists. Here's the naked truth: In the fast-paced arena of social media marketing, it isn't brevity that triumphs—it's the might of a story well told, short though it may be, that captures and keeps the fickle attention of our scrolling eyes.


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Mitchell's own copy of four great Hemingway novels

The Power of Brevity and Emotion


Think we can't do both in social media video production?


Enter, stage left, Mr. Hemingway, a maestro of the concise, whose brief prose left an indelible mark on storytelling and, to a much lesser degree, boxing.


Hemingway’s brilliance lay in his ability to condense complex emotions and narratives into a few meticulously chosen words. Consider the legend of his six-word story, supposedly told to a young writer at one of his favorite well-worn saloons down near the equator. Legend goes he tasked the boy with a challenge to write him this obscenely short, six-word tale. The boy looked back, said it couldn't be done.


Maestro grabbed a bar napkin and scribbled:


'For sale: Baby shoes, never worn.'


And with that heart-breaking yarn, a short story packed with so much depth, the future was written, right? - well, in a way, but now much louder and usually with a lot less punch.


So, brevity, meet fist.


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A Young Hemingway looking to drop some knowledge

TikTok and Instagram Reels challenge creators and marketers alike to convey compelling narratives in mere seconds. It's the Hemingway-esque task of our era: creating engaging, emotionally resonant content marketing campaigns in a format that is, by nature, brief. But the power to evoke profound emotions with minimal words, doesn’t often follow.


We’re left asking, “Does brevity, for brevity's sake, ever a masterpiece make?”


The Art of Storytelling: Beyond Word Count


The rush towards ever-shorter content often overlooks a crucial element of storytelling: depth.


Or, at the very least, the type of gut-punch moment that resonates nearly as much as that damn kid in the Darth Vadar outfit, seemingly starting his dad’s Volkswagen using only The Force.


Consider viral social media videos, short and sharp, they flash with humor, shock, then fade. They grab us, then we forget. Your brand's recognition, brief as a summer storm.


Embracing Depth in a World of Brevity


Aristotle may have started it, 'Poetics' his map. Plot, character, emotion. Now it lands solely now at the feet of the digital storyteller.


Dive deep, past the surface, to explore what your brand genuinely represents. Because no one was ever moved by the way you swing your widget. Are you selling the dream of hope? The fire of passion? Final and lasting connection? That's your start, identifying this core essence, where resonance begins.


Knowing your brand's story, its tie to human heartstrings, is like charting emotions, desires. It's about finding that heartbeat in your message that underlying current which, when tapped into, can turn a simple narrative into an evocative experience. It's thoughtful, purposeful, intentional storytelling.


Show don't tell. The power lies in our ability to evoke imagery, emotions, and experiences rather than merely presenting a recitation of our attributes. On these blitzkrieg platforms, it means more than showing a product. Immerse them. Let them feel the adventure, the peace, the connection. That's the power of a story well told.


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For a good time, call someone who understands what Hemingway did

Fellow Travellers for the Win


In this rapid digital dance, remember: it's not the speed, it's the soul. Not just spitting out content, but waking the imagination. Take time, understand your message. Work with those who can tell it right. That's how you leap beyond trends. That's how you forge bonds that last. That's how you stand, proud in your story.


Creative pros, marketers, video wizards - they've got to think like Hemingway. Craft the nostalgic, spin new tales, but the goal's the same: stories that move us, that stick, that stir engagement and brand memory.


Be it Hemingway's six-word assault across your jaw or a TikTok trip to simpler days, storytelling's power doesn't age. In this crowded digital marketing and content world, it's not simply about brevity; it's about punch. In a sea of content, it's the sturdier boat, the resonant, well-told tales that leave their mark, and it's those that reward you with the retention you so richly deserve.




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The young Hemingway looks like he can punch on the page or off. Adavanza will be in your corner, too, crafting and punching along with you.


 




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