Maybe You Should be Telling Web Stories

Episode 23: Maybe You Should be Telling Web Stories

In this new episode of The RevolutionFI Podcast, Tim and Jim Kukral think that maybe you should be telling web stories.

“So, the question is this: How can 50+ folks like us, honest and hard-working, how do we manage our current responsibilities and still plan for retirement? 401ks alone won’t be enough and we don’t have 40 years to save, so how do we leverage our experience and wisdom to gain financial independence? That is the question, and this podcast will give you the answers. My name is Tim, and welcome to the Revolution. The RevolutionFI podcast.”



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Tim Desmond  

Alright, welcome to the Tuesday Trends Edition RevolutionFI. I’m Tim, and it’s so great to have you back with me today. Hopefully your Tuesday morning is rocking and rolling for you.

Before we talk about some Google Web stories with my buddy Jim Kukral, I ask a small favor of you. If you are really enjoying the podcast and finding it useful, please leave a review on iTunes. I don’t know exactly what amazon wizardry that does that makes any difference at all, but I hear it does. So, if you do find this podcast entertaining and informative, please consider leaving a review there. All right.

Well, I’m happy to welcome back Jim Kukral, he decided not to run. How are you doing this morning, Jim?

Jim Kukral  

Hey, I’m doing great. I’m up early and ready to rock and roll. I want to use my DJ voice though. It’s like, hey, let’s get it cuz there’s a morning zoo.

Tim Desmond  

Yeah, you could do that. It could have a morning show kind of vibe to it, right?

Jim Kukral  

I won’t do that. I won’t subject your listeners.

Web Stories

Tim Desmond  

Well, this is an interesting story. So Tuesday is the trend segment, and I saw this post on the Google blog.

The title of the post is Tenor, Text Sets, Captions Come to Web Stories for WordPress, and I was really intrigued by that. This was posted on November 12. I’ll have a link in the show notes. One of the newsletters that I subscribe to, The Stacked Marketer, brought it to my attention, and here’s what The Stacked Marketer had to say about it. He said, “Web Stories have been slowly creeping up on the internet over the past six months or so, and Google’s just released their first major update for the plugin.”

So, I looked at it, and the Google site says “Visual storytelling has come to WordPress, make visual stories on the web your very own.” It’s almost like a picture book-style WordPress plugin. If you’re using WordPress, this could be a free plugin that you use. They’ve added new text sets, they’ve added animated GIFs, they made it drag and drop. All of this I was finding out for the first time and, you know, with all of the social media stuff that’s happening with Instagram stories and TikTok and Twitter’s rolling out stuff, reels, it seems like Google’s making a play here, too. Jim, what do you think of this Google Web Stories idea about this sort of graphical and text-based form of storytelling on a website?

Grabbing Attention

Jim Kukral  

Well, listen, storytelling has evolved, and, you know, I wrote a book called Unskippable. That is the basic premise of this book. You have literally seconds, right? Nowadays, everyone wants to skip everything as fast as they can. So, when you watch somebody on their tablet or their phone, what are they doing? They’re swiping, swiping, scrolling, scrolling, swipe, swipe, scrolling, scrolling, how are you supposed to get somebody’s attention and hold it?

The social economy of where we are in our brains right now, as we swipe, swipe, swipe, I mean, you even see an ad, they’re like, hey, don’t swipe yet because we’ve got to get important to offer. They understand that’s what’s going on. When you look at this Web Stories for WordPress thing with Google, that’s exactly what this is. It’s allowing you to create more of an Instagram type of Facebook post. That’s a quick hit graphic headline piece that people will pay attention to because that’s where our brains are at right now.

I will tell you this, we’re not losing our attention spans, like our attention spans are not getting lesser. What’s happening is we’re becoming better at deciding what we want to pay attention to and that is the trick–how do you create unicorn-level content content that people want to see that really helps them, that really gets through them quickly? When you could do that, you’ll have success, and I think, see this as a step in that direction.

The Network Effect

Tim Desmond  

I do, too. I am a bit skeptical as to how widespread adoption of this would be because you have the network effect when you’re talking about social media. When Instagram rolls out some new feature, everyone who’s on Instagram benefits from that, but you don’t have that same network effect with a WordPress site. I wonder, how is this going to evolve, and is this going to be more of like an advertising platform? I could see brands or companies making these Web Stories, almost the same way a TV commercial functions today, as opposed to a person documenting a story. What’s your sense of that?

Jim Kukral  

Yeah, well, it’s interesting because when you look at a company like Google, Facebook, and any of the big tech companies, they’re looking to the future. They have all the numbers. We don’t have them. They don’t share it with us. So, when I see them make shifts like this, I see them adapting to what they think is going to happen. I have a college student, I have a high school student, who are both of my kids. They’re not interested in having websites. Do I think they’ll ever have a WordPress website? Probably never. Right? Like, they have Instagram, they’ve got Snapchat. You know, one of them’s on Facebook, the younger one isn’t. I don’t ever see them making this. This is probably an attempt to appeal to them because they realize that college students aren’t building websites like this. That’s how I see this.

The WordPress Platform

Tim Desmond  

Interesting. Yeah, it’ll be fun to watch it. I mean, WordPress has kind of become the defacto website builder today, although Squarespace and Wix are certainly making inroads. It’s interesting, the whole plugin, and you have to wonder where WordPress is going and who’s going to be using it. It’s no longer just a blogging platform. A lot of businesses have their fully functional websites on WordPress.

Jim Kukral  

I’m a WordPress guy, and I wonder. I see the stats years ago, like, two thirds of every website on the internet was like WordPress, or some crazy number like that. 90%, or 75% of all websites are built on the WordPress platform. Now you’re right, the other ones are coming in, but they obviously know something’s coming. They’ve done their research, so that’s why we’re seeing this. It’s pretty neat.

Tim Desmond  

It is. So, check it out, play around with it, it doesn’t cost you anything. We’ll see where it goes. All right, well, that’ll do it for Tuesday Trends. Jim, I’m gonna give you tomorrow off because on Wednesday, I do my Book Club of the Month segment, and I wasn’t going to ask you to read a book tonight, so you’re off for tomorrow morning.

Jim Kukral  

All right. Well, I’ll be back on Thursday, and I’ll bring the coffee and the doughnuts.

Tim Desmond  

Alright, so I’ll be back tomorrow with the solo episode. It is the fourth and final segment of The ONE Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results by Gary Keller. I’ll be talking about that tomorrow, and we’ll be back with Jim on Thursday.

Transcription by Otter.ai, please forgive the bot for typos and mistakes.

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