203: 3 PRO STORYTELLING STRATEGIES
I’m in the middle of a story-focus here on the podcast and over on the Facebook page, and Instagram… because I really believe that stories are THE essential tool we have as speakers, and finessing our skills and abilities with storytelling is both needed - and can be transformative for your business, idea and message. So I wanted to share with you three approaches that I think are next level… that I see really skilled, powerful, comfortable and confident speakers make… and I want to direct your attention to them so we can utilize these more in our speaking…
#1… I see storytelling pros use what I call a “cold open.”
A cold open is what you just START. There’s no preamble, there’s no preface… like, “I’m going to tell you a quick story..”
They just own the space and the moment, and begin.
It reminds me of what the speaker Scott Berkun said in his book, Confessions of a Public Speaker (which is great, by the way) - talks about the most powerful moment we have as speakers… and that’s RIGHT BEFORE WE START… why would we want to waste it sort of easing our way in like that?
#2…The SECOND strategy that storytelling pros use is SILENCE.
Sitting in the powerful moments, and not running away from them.
I used to work with a speaker who was a PAUSING MASTER. A 15-minute talk of his would be 1.5 pages in word. What?! How can that be?! Well… he took his time. Not that he was SLOW or uninteresting in the least… he could let things SIT.
And we need that, as an audience. We need to let things sink in… feel it for a moment.
#3…the THIRD approach I want to share with you today… is the strategy of creating DRAMA in our stories.
Not too much drama - not like fake 12-year old middle school drama…. but
Real drama. Life drama.
And it doesn’t have to be bad things… it can be GOOD things, too!
I think of classic baseball movies as some of the BEST storytellers out there…
the slow down moment up at the plate? That is some good drama!
What’s going to happen?
Leaving people on the edge of their seat… cliffhangers,
The next time you speak a story… I want you thinking about these three things…
How can I JUST START? This is hard, and feels weird. Try it anyway.
Where can I utilize the powerful pause? What needs a moment to sink in?
And where is the natural drama in this story? How can I slow that moment down and build up the momentum, focus their attention, and leave them wondering… what’s going to happen!?!
Now if you’re into finessing your storytelling skills - and why wouldn’t you be, really, since it’s SOOOO important! - I want to invite you to check out this FREE resource I’ve created call the 5-minute story Makeover! It’s two short videos and a workbook delivered to you by email with some essential and expert advice to take your storytelling from good to GREAT. Love it!
You can access this free - short - training at speakingstorymakeover.com
Three essential strategies the pros use in their storytelling
The most important moment in any talk
Battling our fears so we can hold space when others rush through.