Telling a compelling story is a great way to get people’s attention. But turning up the drama is only part of the equation.
It doesn’t matter how amazing a story is, if its not relatable to the audience, it won’t have an impact. And without impact, your story is a poor sales tool.
There are many universal themes that pop up in great stories – rejection, failure, and fear are three of the big ones.
And the reason these themes tend to be negative is that stories need tension. They need an obstacle that has to be overcome, because life is full of obstacles. The key is that these obstacles need to be relatable to other people.
Sometimes speakers will tell a dramatic story, but will forget to relate the experience to something that we all share.
Hearing about a guy who got trapped by a falling boulder and had to cut his arm off is not immediately relatable to me. But, if he tells me a story about having to face your greatest fears, and taking painful actions to get to a desired result – then I’m really hooked. It’s all in how you tell that story that makes it relatable.