Storytelling and Communication Styles Blog #2

Know your audience!

Many years ago I joined a local Toastmasters group to improve my public speaking skills. The first and most important thing we were encouraged to do when crafting a good oral presentation or story was to identify who the target audience would be. Like a good speechwriter, an effective digital storyteller must be able to engage an audience by understanding why they might be interested or willing to read what you have to say. Know your audience.

Why am I writing this?

The second most important element is to clearly identify the purpose of the speech or story. If you have a clear idea of who you are writing for – then the next obvious question is why and what do you hope to accomplish by sharing a story. To be an effective storyteller the story must have a purpose and the purpose needs to be clearly stated. It is intended to be educational or provide historical information is intended to be entertaining or be a call to action? Define what the purpose of your story.

Simple Structure and solid Proofreading

Again, like a good speech, a good story should have a strong beginning or opening statement and clearly state what you hope to share along with the purpose of the article.

It must also have a solid middle, with a few interesting ideas or accurate facts that back up the beginning and a strong ending. One strategy for a strong ending is to begin the story with an end in mind. Consider what you want the reader to do or learn and make it easy to share! Open stong, follow with facts and close with a strong ending. 

To be an effective digital storyteller it is also important to write with clarity, simplicity and with a positive tone with an active voice. Finally, before sharing your story – take the time to closely review grammar and spelling to ensure a professional image – proof and proofread again! 

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