Storytelling can be a tricky skill to master.
Including the right amount of detail, pacing and making sure your audience engage with your story can be difficult tasks.
Introducing a narrative can help improve your storytelling and keep your story on track. To help your audience to engage with your story you can introduce characters they can relate to.
These characters don’t necessarily have to be people. Instead, they can be places, products or other things associated with your work. Once you create a narrative around them they can really be anything!
We’ve put together the characters you should add into your next story to help better engage with your audience.
With all stories, we need a character to root for. Someone we identify with and who we want to see succeed. Here lies our hero.
As we said, this hero doesn’t always have to be your CEO. It could be the product or service you provide.
In the case of the hero, you have to make sure your audience can be captivated by them. Most of the time, people have to like them. The hero is the face of the brand and the main character in your story.
Companies around the world have caught on to this and have developed heroes in their own brand stories and campaigns.
The hero of the Disney story? They have three. Their products, both merchandise and films. The experiences of Disneyland. Walt Disney himself. His legacy, the museums, his quotes.
Lego? Can you name their founder? It’s because he is not the hero of their story. The product is.
Your hero needs a nemesis. A joker to your Batman, a wicked witch to your Dorothy.
Your villain has to be someone or something that your hero comes up against. A force or problem they have to overcome. The antagonist represents obstacles that get in your hero’s way.
The antagonist of your story can be a number of things. A rival company, an issue you may be facing or maybe it’s an internal struggle your hero needs to solve before it can be successful.
Dollar Shave Club is brilliant at showing their antagonist but never naming them.
The villain in their stories are the big name shaving brands like Gillette.
Naturally, your villain will be unlikeable. They need to be a character your audience wants to see defeated.
You need to make sure to describe the antagonist in a way that the audience knows they are the enemy, Dollar Shave Club do this by poking fun at them. Here you start making your audience root for you to overcome them.
Once you have identified your hero and your villain they need to go on a journey.
The antagonist will create a problem for your hero. The journey is your hero’s campaign to overcome that problem.
Along this journey, there will be highs and lows. Moments where you thought you had won but ultimately your enemy fought back. Moments where you thought you were down and out but you came back fighting. This will continue until ultimately you overcome the forces of evil.
While this may sound like it is coming from a Marvel movie it’s important to remember characters and narratives aren’t just for the cinema.
This journey will keep your audience hooked. It will keep them interested in what is going on with your product or service. You are turning stats into stories and engaging your audience in the process.
When you’re telling a story or delivering a presentation in work turn your story into a narrative. Turn your product into the hero and your rival company into the villain. Your story will stop being an everyday presentation and will turn into a blockbuster that will have your audience gripped.