Storytelling: Learn to tell remarkable stories
In your daily life, whether to debate, explain yourself or even tell a funny story, you need to know how to communicate. So, taking that into account, wouldn’t it be great to always be able to grab the attention of whoever is listening to you?
What if we say there is a way and it’s not that complicated. Once upon a time there was storytelling…. the act of telling stories and achieving greater audience retention.
Storytelling consists of a series of techniques that, when embedded in your message, can make a story much more engaging. Remember that movie, lecture or book that entertains you? Most likely the author of these materials used, consciously or unconsciously, these techniques that we will discuss here.
In this article, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about storytelling, as well as good examples for you to start using this method in practice.
What is Storytelling
Telling a story, be it good or bad, is the oldest way to pass information on to someone. Regardless of the period, man has always used narratives to persuade or explain a theme.
We can still say more, everything you know today – your ideologies, customs and beliefs – was based on stories that were told, if not directly to you, to your ancestors.
However, this is exactly where storytelling techniques come in.
That’s because although we don’t always carry this nomenclature with us, even if unintentionally, we separate the good stories from the bad ones. That is, we cling to good stories to the point of carrying them for the rest of our lives, while easily forgetting the bad ones.
In this scenario, storytelling is nothing more than a method of communication whose objective is to entertain and create an emotional communication with the receiver.
Where is Storytelling present?
After seeing the theme definition, you may still be in doubt about where to apply it.
As we said, storytelling is communication techniques. So, for any message that we want to pass, we can use this method. See some examples to understand better.
in a presentation
You’ve probably had to make a presentation to school, college or your boss. So know that if you knew the techniques that we will bring in this article, the result could be even better.
Speakers, for example, tell stories so that you don’t get distracted during the presentation time and thus get the message.
The same goes for debates. Convincing someone is not easy, so if you want to do that, first explain the story well so the listener understands your point of view.
in a content
When we quote content, we are being very general, a lecture, for example, can convey relevant content. But what we want you to understand is that many times you can be involved by good storytellers without even knowing it.
The art of storytelling is present in any content format. In a movie, a book, an advertisement or even that song lyrics.
Why is storytelling important?
Keeps the audience’s attention
Telling a good story increases audience retention and, if you don’t do it that way, it gets confused, the audience becomes disinterested and, little by little, the rejection of your text, video or any other content will increase.
With storytelling you make your audience create an emotional connection with each step that is being passed. That is, it generates identification and therefore the public will want to follow it until the end.
Remains in the public’s memory
In addition to liking what is being broadcast, people involved with your content will also remember your message. They may not fully remember, but the essence of the story will remain in the audience’s mind.
Remember that movie whose final message doesn’t leave your head, or that explanation, in which the past methodology guides you to this day in your work.
It can go viral
Consider that a blog article that really educates the reader has spontaneous shares. You can analyze what these contents are by searching for topics on Buzzsumo .
What is the structure of storytelling?
Now that you understand what it is and why you should do storytelling, you need to know the structure of one.
First, as obvious as it may seem, your story should have a beginning, middle and end. However, the challenge is not in this, but in the transition between these phases. That is, what will really hold the audience’s attention.
See how to do this:
First phase – The beginning of the story
To start your storytelling you must have a protagonist, that is, the main character who will walk with the audience until the end of the story.
Present at least a little of your trajectory to become what you are today, but mainly define your current characteristics well. The way you do this will interfere with the course of the content.
After all, your audience must empathize with them, research well and find strengths and weaknesses that your audience can identify with.
Showing the place and time in which the story takes place is also an ideal complement for the reader to “get in the mood”.
Lastly, to transition to the next phase, enter the character’s first conflict. Define well the difficulty or challenge that your protagonist will have to face. Capturing the audience’s attention depends on it, after all the story revolves around that now.
Second phase – The development
The “middle” of the story should be the longest part. That is, you need to develop the character’s relationship to the conflict and prevent it from getting too to the point.
Treat the conflict as something really complex, make this moment demand attitudes, but also generate disappointments for the protagonist. We will see later that good storytelling is a roller coaster of emotions.
So do whatever it takes to put it into practice without being irrelevant. Add new characters, environments, in short, make sure the audience doesn’t lose attention during the character’s journey.
Third phase – The conclusion
Every good story is good because it has a good ending. However, making a good ending doesn’t mean that the story has to end well.
Everything you’ve written so far will lead the protagonist to a decision. And, as difficult as it is, this moment is the most awaited by everyone who is following your story.
The climax, as it is called, is the period of greatest tension as what will happen here will define the outcome of the story. Here you can give your audience what they are waiting for, or even step out of their comfort zone and give the character a totally unexpected decision.
Finally, give an adequate resolution to the decisions and moments lived by the protagonist.
As we have already said, there is not just one way to end a narrative. Movies, for example, can have happy, frightening, sad endings, or arousing any other emotion in the audience.
How can defining your persona improve your storytelling?
There are some stories that are universal, everyone likes it, no exceptions. However, in many cases, a narrative may be relevant to you, but not so much to someone else.
So the first tip you need to know before you start typing your script is: write for your audience, not yourself.
Define your persona, that is, collect data about your audience in addition to gender, age group and other superficial information. Here are some important data to note:
- What are the audience’s goals;
- What are the difficulties;
- What is the moment of life or professional career they are living;
- What they expect and don’t expect to hear;
- What channels and content formats do you prefer.
Check out some characteristics of a good storytelling.
Defines the theme well
Knowing how to write it, a story can be told in many ways. It can be more romanticized, dramatic, more joyful or even more serious.
No theme is better than another, however they should be better suited to the context. That is, adapt your story to whoever you are writing. And finally, remember that when choosing one, keep it in your train of thought until the end.
Create a relevant conflict
Defining your persona with all the questions that were shown above allows you to know all the needs, wants, concerns and emotions of your audience. Then work on them.
Your entire story will be based on a conflict that the protagonist will have to face. And since the audience should identify with that character, choose a conflict relevant to them.
There’s no point in your story having all the necessary elements if your audience doesn’t care about the problem cited.
That way, you can, for example, talk about difficulties in a business environment for people whose goal is to grow professionally, or write a novel for that persona who has relationship difficulties.
Choose the important parts
In this article, you’ve already seen that to retain the audience in your content, going straight to the point can be a disaster. But when writing a real story, for example, you will find that many details are unnecessary.
Many of these parts must be “cut”, regardless of what their plot is. However, some of them may be more relevant depending on the context and who is receiving the message.
Imagine a movie script that tells the story of entrepreneurs. At one point, when the protagonist gets together for a brainstorm, there is a moment of relaxation and lots of laughter.
Now think. If the film adopts a more serious tone, like a very technical documentary, this part may be irrelevant. However, if it is a film for the general public, a relaxed atmosphere is perfect to make the story more human.