Incorporating Storytelling in Your Presentation
Stories tend to have higher recall rates than plain facts. Business presenters know intuitively that storytelling is great; however, if it is not executed properly, it may not be as effective. Here are some key techniques to use for incorporating storytelling in your presentation, to make sure your story has the desired result:
1. Transition into it well.
Saying “now here’s a story” is a little dull to a room full of busy people. The transition prepares the mind for what’s coming next and can drastically affect how your audience reacts and retains it. Frame the story as a specific example: “Here’s how we could prevent the disaster from last year,” or start with the end message: “You don’t need a title to be a leader. Here’s why. Three weeks ago…”
2. Make sure something happens
A story has a beginning, middle, and end. It also needs characters, a distinct time and place, and an event that happened. Without these elements, you are just sharing facts. Get your audience to want to ask the question: “…and then what happened?”
3. Relatable experiences are the most memorable
It’s extremely easy to start tuning out a story that has no personal relevance. So if you’re talking about a trip to Mars in your story, be sure to ground it in something relatable and tangible for your audience. Stories work best when they are linked to people’s experiences.
4. Don’t just drop it, repetition is important
Stories have a higher recall than a list of statistics, but you still want to be sure you audience leaves with your key points in mind. Referencing your story and an important point multiple times during a presentation can help ensure the right things stick.
Storytelling is an invaluable tool for a great presentation, but it only works if it is done right. For more on incorporating storytelling, see Part 2 of our Mistakes in Story Telling: http://www.slideshare.net/reximedia/4-more-mistakes-in-storytelling-38974464