What Radio Can Learn from YouVersion Stories

Brian Curee

Storytelling is as ancient as humanity. For as long as humans have existed, we have been sharing stories about our tragedies, and triumphs. In fact, the format of storytelling has stayed pretty much the same for millennia. We meet a hero but then they’re faced with seemingly insurmountable odds. But with help from a guide and perseverance, the hero achieves their goals. 

If you work in radio, then you know that people love stories. Not only are they fun to listen to but they’re also great teaching tools. Teachers and religious leaders know this, too. You’re far more likely to remember a parable or a lively verse than a list of dry bullet-points. Stories can help radio stations reach and connect with their audience.

Radio managers and programmers, your social media managers can learn a lot from the YouVersion app. It’s a powerful example of how to use story structure to engage and delight people. Here’s what you need to know about applying YouVersion and how to apply their lessons to social media stories for radio.

What is YouVersion?

YouVersion, also known as Bible.com, is a mobile and web-based application. It offers thousands of different versions of the Bible as well as “verse of the day” options. You can even get these verses sent to your Apple Watch or smart speakers. The creators also included a community engagement feature, so that groups of people could discuss scripture together. 

It also includes devotionals, Bible plans, audio Bibles, offline features, and teaching tools. Plus, YouVersion allows users to collect their own favorite verses by highlighting and bookmarking. It’s a modern, user-friendly way to engage with spiritual text as an individual as well as with friends.

How does YouVersion engage people with stories?

YouVersion was originally created because people recognized that modern users needed an appealing way to engage with the Bible. The “You” of YouVersion was taken from YouTube, to indicate a place that is user-centered and tech-savvy. Social media stories are tricky to get right, but YouVersion does a great job. 

There are two major ways that YouVersion engages people. The first is that YouVersion breaks down a large text into bite-sized pieces. The second way they appeal to users is by creating different forms of engagement for the same content.

Let’s dig a bit deeper into this with an example from YouVersion. One morning, you open the app to see your verse of the day, and you click on the YouVersion story. At first, you are greeted with a simple welcome that reminds you why you are here. Then, you’re presented with the short text on a single screen for easy digesting. Next, you’re offered a short video that explores the text and its themes. Pretty cools so far! Next, you can dig into reflection questions, related readings, and images to deepen your own individual understanding—all contained within their app using the YouVersion app’s stories feature. Your experience ends with an invitation to come back tomorrow, closing the loop on the circular user experience.

YouVersion_Stories
YouVersion Stories Flip Through GIF Sample

Applying these elements to your social media stories

Taking notes? Good. With a few simple tools, you can apply YouVersion’s stories technique to your own social media stories. The most important thing to carry into your own business is that bite-sized content is crucial. Here’s a quick bullet list of what this might look like for your station.

  1. Welcome your followers (e.g., Good Morning) and give a brief text explaining what your show will be about today.
  2. Create a short video clip with the DJ sharing something that relates to their show topic today.
  3. Provide an image quote based on the topic the viewer can share or save.
  4. Create a question or poll to gather feedback from your followers.
  5. Create an image story slide that invites them to tune in during the show today.
  6. Close the stories with an invite to come back tomorrow if your team has the capacity to do a daily series. Suppose they don’t try a weekly series.
  7. Entice people back to your website or another platform to continue engaging with that content. Use a link in bio or something similar. 

Remember that consistent posting is the best way to guarantee regular engagement. This way, people can expect your next post and look forward to it.

Takeaway

Social media stories are short and sweet, but that’s why they are powerful! Use storytelling techniques in combination with modern technology to create bite-sized, meaningful stories for your station’s audience. Be consistent and help your followers connect with each other, and your engagement will skyrocket. 🚀

Our KILLER team at Killer Bee Marketing creates custom digital strategies to help reach people on your target platforms—even the ones that seem scary and unfamiliar! We offer free 15-minute chats to get to know you, so don’t hesitate to reach out. We’ll create a strategy that fulfills your needs and serves your audience.

Brian Curee

Leave a Comment