The Digital Age of Storytelling SXSW Event Recap

Springtime in Austin brings the best to the city – bluebonnet blooms, luscious green trees, and of course, SXSW. Last week, we had the pleasure of hosting an incredible event during the SXSW buzz with panels and workshops that touched on The Digital Age of Storytelling. Not only did we love gathering with strong and diverse women to hear them share their wisdom and input on various topics around the digital age, but we enjoyed connecting with our #PLANOLYfam IRL! Set at the beautiful and picturesque Hotel Ella, and decorated with gorgeous blooms from Earl Grey Floral, it’s safe to say that it was a scene that was made just for the ‘gram. Read on for a recap of some of our favorite moments from the event!

Crafting a Safe Space

We kicked off the day with our “Crafting a Safe Space Online & Offline” panel, and dove right into a conversation about practicing healthy habits online that make social media a better place for you and your well-being. Our speakers included Jules Hunt (founder of @omandthecity), Brandy Pham (Founder and Creative Director of @planoly), Naomi Seifter (Founder of @picnik), Alexis Lanman (Marketing Director at @newwaterloo), Mica May (Founder and Creative Director of @maydesigns), and was moderated by Priscilla Castro (Brand Partnerships Manager at @planoly). With the increased use of social media in our daily life, it’s important to cultivate a balanced relationship with our digital presence for our mental health, and also to find a community that supports us. We were so inspired by all of the panelists’ input and best practices surrounding this topic! Here are a few of our favorite takeaways:

Never Feel Alone

  • “We’re wired for story; we’re wired for connection. At the end of the day, we can all feel alone, but when we connect with each other, we don’t have to be alone. Don’t just post and ghost. Be intentional and engage with others on social media.” – Mica May of May Designs
  • “When I began to share about my son’s Autism on Instagram, I began to lose followers, but the ones that stayed were truly connected to my story and appreciated me for sharing it. If we care about the few followers we lose, we will hold back from sharing real stories that connect with others that let us know that we’re not alone. This is how we find our community online.” – Brandy Pham of Planoly
  • “Whatever you’ve been holding back, say it, share it, overshare it. We’re in an age of oversharing, and there are people looking for a community, and they want to hear what you’ve been holding back.”Priscilla Castro of Planoly
  • “When I start feeling insecure, it’s because I’ve been spending too much time in front of the screen. It’s so essential for your mental health to step back and set boundaries with social media.” – Jules Hunt of Om and the City
  • “Community is part of our nature – do more of the things that connect you to the roots of who you are.” – Naomi Seifter of Picnik

Find Inspiration

  • “Take time off to get back into balance. Spend time with your loved ones and with nature to get inspired. My best ideas have come when I shut off my phone.” – Naomi Seifter of Picnik
  • “A lot of creatives struggle with time management. Create systems and workflows that help you optimize your time like task batching.” – Jules Hunt of Om and the City
  • “With everything you do, ask if it’s an act of self-love.” – Priscilla Castro of Planoly

Don’t Give into the Comparison Game

  • “We curate what we post to social, and it’s the highlight reel of our lives. So we’re basing our comparisons on something that’s not entirely realistic.” – Priscilla Castro of Planoly
  • When I stopped comparing myself to others on Instagram or caring about what others thought of me, I gained so much power. I had a new profound outlook, became everyone’s cheerleader, celebrated everyone’s success and hard work, and was able to concentrate on my own work and focus on what I truly wanted to do instead of falling into that unproductive rabbit hole of comparison.” – Brandy Pham of Planoly

Enjoy the Process

Storytelling with StoriesEdit

After a quick lunch break with Thai Fresh, we jumped into our workshop with Planoly’s founder, Brandy Pham. With the recent launch of our Instagram Stories design app, StoriesEdit, Brandy broke down the in’s and out’s of our exciting new product by sharing how to engage in ‘Storytelling with StoriesEdit.’ It was great to give our attendees a firsthand look at how to create and share impactful branded Instagram Stories using StoriesEdit and amplify their storytelling strategy. If you’re interested in learning more about StoriesEdit, join our webinar Tuesday, March 26th at 12 PM CST! Register here.

Planning For Successful Storytelling with Intention

Our final workshop was led by our Assistant Partnerships Manager, Leslie Lozano, along with Regine Malibiran of Collective Blue and Lauren Murray of Lemon Laine to chat about ‘Planning for Successful Storytelling with Intention.’ Leslie dove into the importance of brand storytelling, letting your audience know your brand origins, and how your storytelling content can provide your audience value. Lauren and Regine also shared their brand case studies and how intentional storytelling via Instagram Stories has been one of the most impactful strategies that have allowed their brands to grow.

Mix and Mingle

As we wrapped up, our guests mixed and mingled with attendees while enjoying blondies and sipping butter coffee graciously provided by Picnik. Not only that, but each of our guests went home with a Planoly tote filled with a custom-made notebook by Erin Condren, tumbler by May Designs, and Planoly branding worksheets. A big thank you to Richard’s Rainwater for keeping us hydrated all day as well! We had an incredible time sharing and learning with all of our attendees, and can’t thank those that came out enough!

If you missed out on Digital Age of Storytelling summit, make sure to look out for more events we’ll be hosting in the near future!

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