I Saw It In The Funny Pages
Comics aren't just cartoons for kids. There are some brilliant new illustrated, graphic novels that can blow your socks off.
For example, Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic by Alison Bechdel or the brilliant Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Kid on Earth by Chris Ware are both superb pieces of the modern "comic book". I've listed some that I've read and highly recommend at the end of this post.
If you want to be moved, learn to tell a story in fewer words and present brilliant visuals, please try any one of these books. And if you are interested in learning from the art form, read Scott McCloud's superb book, Understanding Comics.
Now to my point. Seth Godin posts today about what happens between the frames of a comic in the mind's of readers. Readers fill in emotion and thought between the frames. And I agree that we marketers tend to focus all of our attention on the frames we present with no thought given to what the 'marketee' might feel or think between our frames.
This is a very, very good observation. Thanks Seth. I wonder how much more effective we might be if we gave some thought to 'between the frames'.
But something that always irks me about the posts of business experts is that they are always providing us with what we must do, but unclear on the how to's. I am not criticizing Seth. He's said on numerous occasions that he is not a consultant. I will not speak for him but will offer my perception that he is an idea incubator.
But let's stay on point. How do we enhance the power of the gap between the frames? For one thing, marketers tend to be long on information. Information creates black voids in attention, the worse kind of gap. But a story teller leads us down a path. Maybe to touch us, maybe entertain us, maybe sell us. The good story teller gives enough detail to maintain our attention but not so much that we cannot vividly fill the gaps ourselves.
That's why movies are never as good as 'the book'. The book permits us to paint the picture in our own mind as we 'see' it based on the guiding description of the author. We seldom picture people or scenes precisely the same way a movie director might design them for film.
To get back to the how to...
Let's focus more on the story and less on information. Our prospects can fill gaps but that's okay if they get the story right.
Chris Reich is learning all the time.
"Little improvements add up to big results."
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