As a social marketer and social entrepreneur, I am highly aware of the use of narrative and framing in our daily lives. From politics to the marketplace, who sets the narrative and how they set it has great power. It impacts who cares about an issue, what they hear, and what they are willing to do.
Recently, everywhere I go, people ask me how to tell a more effective story. Advocates, colleagues, and clients observe that the organizations that achieve policy goals, get transformative grants, or seize the market’s interest are the ones that 1) have the resources to disseminate their story, and 2) just tell the better story. I would argue that the real winners are the organizations that actually manage to tell a story at all.
Are you sitting comfortably? Then listen to PR leaders discussing the power of storytelling to build brands and energise businesses (Interesting read "@ThePRCoach: Good read: What is the role of #storytelling in #PR?
I love this post that reminds us all about the power of storytelling for businesses. Here Public Relations leaders share with us how stories are critical to use in business for branding and building a strong customer base.
Stories are everywhere, but the real trick is the following, says Tom Watson, professor of public relations at Bournemouth University: “For brand communicators, the challenge is to create narratives that are deserving of trust by their target markets and sustainable over time."
I also like what Kevin Murray, chairman of PR agency the Good Relations Group, says: “I use stories to entertain people at dinner parties to amuse. But in business you need to tell stories that make a difference.” Good point!
Go read what the PR professionals in the article have to say. There are great insights.
Yes, it's true, I've had story structure on the brain. I've also recently joined pinterest (of which I immediately became addicted). But there's a happy side effect of these two obsessions… this post!
Holy Cow! Here's a blog post with 10 different diagrams on story structure! I doubt you will ever need another story structure diagram after looking at these.
Some are similar. Some have their own unique twist. And then there's the 17 stages of Joseph Campbell's Monomyth to explore. Yikes -- that's a big one!
Of course, the simplest story structure is: problem -- resolution. Add to that a set-up/context in the beginning and a meaningful close at the end, and you are done.
Hah -- would that storytelling could be so simple! As every professional storyteller will tell you, a powerful story is all in the delivery. Still, if you don't follow the structures in these diagrams, you will simply end up with a plot-based description: "I went to the store. I bought some bread. I came home." No story there! I doubt you would pay money for that one.
Soooo -- check out these diagrams, use them to craft your stories, and you are half-way there. Then go work on your delivery :)