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Storytelling in the Joyconomy; how to engage guests with hope and happiness

2024 sees the dawning of the new Joyconomy. As a reaction to climate change, the cost of living crisis and the global pandemic, consumers are turning to products and experiences that give them feelings of joy and positivity.

These feel-good trends aren’t just surface level either, they run deep, fulfilling consumers’ sense of self, health and happiness. 

In our 2024 trends report we outline what the Joyconomy means for guest attractions, showing how, in our industry, we need to be mindful of reduced disposable income and increased competition in the form of in-home entertainment, spontaneous trips out and physical products.

2024 visitor attraction industry trends report

So, what skills can we call on to ensure guests choose our attractions? Yes, you guessed it, it's our ability to tell engaging stories and immerse our guests in new worlds.

Guests seem to want opposing things; to step into the story with a sense of agency and to step out and relax, to experience aesthetic joyful environments and for them to have meaning and authenticity. At first glance this seems difficult to deliver on, but by using storytelling we can give our guests what they want, a great guest experience.

The four storytelling themes you need to deliver on for the Joyconomy


Storytelling in the themed attraction industry for optimism

Create stories that lean into positivity, even if your message is a tough one, give guests a chance to imagine a brighter version of themselves and the world. Empower guests with activations, group activity and follow-up messaging.


Storytelling in the themed attraction industry for guest happiness

Take people on an emotional journey with your stories. If you take guests into darker emotional states, give them relief with lighter emotions too. Map an emotional journey across your attraction that leaves guests feeling happy. A quick note; happiness can be calm & quiet and it can be boisterous & loud, choose the right level of happiness for your attraction.


Storytelling in the themed attraction industry for inspiration

Show guests what could be. Show them the power of their creativity, or reimagine the world with them. Allow them to step into something new with technology and sensory immersion. Inspire wonder and allow guests the time to soak it in.


Storytelling in the themed attraction industry for meaning

What makes your experience or story authentic? What can you tell that others can’t? Bring your story and your guest together in new, relevant ways and, most importantly, give them a role to play, a sense of agency. What can your guests do that will change things and leave them feeling fulfilled?

If you need help to tell the story of your attraction, from overarching narratives, to story mapping, walk-throughs, story platforms and content writing, then get in touch with us.

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