Creating your story is just the first part storytelling. You also need a way to tell your story.
As a business storyteller, your goal is to get listeners and readers involved in your story. They will see themselves in your story. They will want to jump in and join the story.
Or realize “this isn’t my story” and go elsewhere, saving you both some time.
Here are 3 tips to become a master storyteller:
- Begin with a crisis.
What brought them to call you? What do they say when you talk on he phone?
View the crisis through their eyes. It’s important not to impose your interpretation or judgment. A problem that seems small to you might seem huge – even insurmountable – to your clients
A dog trainer might share this story:
Charlie walked in the front door of his beautiful new home after a long hard day at work…he was looking forward to a peaceful evening when he realized … half of the living room couch was gone. The dog had chewed it up.
(2) Gain the reader’s attention with vivid details
You can help the reader gain an experience. That starts with advice you probably heard already: “Show, don’t tell.”
“He was clumsy.” Now you’ve gotten past the reader’s experience. You imposed your own judgment and interpretation.
“He banged into the table (ouch!) and knocked over a lamp .” You’re describing what he did. Was he clumsy? Accident-prone? Having a bad day? Your audience gets to decide.
Want to make your story come alive even more?
Tell the story in dialogue. You don’t need to be funny. You can be dramatic, serious or playful.
If you can pull it off, when you’re telling the story out loud, you can use different voices for the various characters.
(3) Pierce the fourth wall.
During a traditional theatre presentation, the actors rarely try to break the fourth wall.
As a business storyteller, you can (and often should) pierce the fourth wall. You can bring your audience into the story with lines like, “Imagine you were looking over my shoulder.” Or, “Picture yourself on an airplane and I’m sitting in the seat next to yours.”
I share more examples and details in Episode 57 of the Strategic Storytelling Podcast.
Learn more about storytelling for your business – 17 Surprising Ways To Grow Your Business With Stories. And check out my storytelling course on Udemy – click here!