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Saturday, September 14 • 4:46pm - 6:30pm
“Persuading through organizational storytelling: A case study”

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Organizational storytelling has recently been described as an effective way to communicate an organization’s overall brand and goals. Successful storytelling helps to address a long-standing organizational problem – the need to create connections with publics to build resilience and brand trust. As a persuasive mechanism, storytelling helps to connect the organization and its publics with emotional connectivity through existing narratives. In the digital age, organizational storytelling takes on an adapted form, whereby narratives continue to be harvested but allow for publics to engage in the narrative process, allowing for the co-creation of narratives. This paper explores the use of organizational storytelling in the digital age through the famous Canadian coffee chain, Tim Horton’s. By examining Tim Horton’s YouTube channel videos, the authors analyzed the persuasiveness of individual video stories to determine the effectiveness of organizational storytelling through a chosen social media platform. Robert Cialdini’s ‘Weapons of Influence’ were used to determine the video stories’ persuasiveness, and ultimately, whether organizational storytelling in the digital age is a successful strategy. Findings deduce that Tim Horton’s engages in the effective use of persuasive storytelling through its YouTube videos, as the weapons of influence used were pervasive. Additionally, the authors noted that multiple persuasive techniques do not need to be used in storytelling, as long as one mode of persuasion is executed effectively. Such successful storytelling has helped Tim Horton’s to develop strong relationships with its publics, allowing for the creation of brand loyalty with longevity.


Melanie Brister

Mount Saint Vincent University, Canada

Alla Kushniryk

Mount Saint Vincent University, Canada

Caleb Langdon

Mount Saint Vincent University, Canada

Shawnee Shepherd

Mount Saint Vincent University, Canada

Saturday September 14, 2013 4:46pm - 6:30pm EDT
Rowe Atrium

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