We have all heard and read about storytelling and how it is the most effective way of marketing. In fact every piece of content should tell a story.
However, most people are not great storytellers and today I want to break it down to the most basics of it – not using any fancy words:
To be able to tell any story and to insure that the person you are talking to is on the same page. You need to:
Be honest, be yourself!
I cannot emphasize enough on this point. It is the most important point. In fact if you only adapt this the next time you give a presentation, tell a story or do an interview you will notice how much better you are communicating.
Before you start to dwell on your story and start talking, take a minute to share how you feel, tell your listeners what you are going through right at that point. If you are scared, tell them you are scared, tell them it is your first time presenting tell them that the spotlight that is in your face is burning a hole through your head! As soon as you start speaking honestly, the sooner you will feel that all that nervousness is fading away and the sooner you can be yourself.
Give them a background!
We usually all fall in the trap of expecting people to know the things that we do – forgetting that they might not even know what you are talking about. It is always better to give them the necessary information about what you are about to tell them before you start on rambling.
Tell your story the way it happened – obvious enough. But what some people do is that they will skip through different tenses and go back and forward in the stories timeline so much that the listener gets as confused as a bunch of wires all tangled up!
Pause, ask and check!
This is a step in story telling that really makes all the difference. At this point in your story you do need to slow down and check that your listeners are still with you! Make eye contact, ask them question or even ask for an emotional input – I prefer doing this by cracking an indirect joke.
Try doing one of these things or all of them the next time you have to present!