1. Who is your audience and what do they want?

Think specific. Who are these people, really? What are they trying to achieve? What are their goals? These goals don’t need to be super lofty. They just need to be accessible and practical. When your audience hears them, they should say, "Yep, that’s me."

Pro Tip: if you struggle to narrow your audience, find the common denominator—the thing that everyone cares about—and put it front and center.

2. What Problems Do They Typically Run Into?

Here is where you really begin to tell the story. Walk the audience through the frustrations they experience. What keeps them up at night? What do they complain about at lunch?

This should be where people say, "Oh, wow. You actually know what my life is like."

3. Why do those problems really matter?

This is where you climb the hierarchy of needs. Help them understand that this is about much more than some sterile business problem. There is always something human at stake. This is a great opportunity to practice the Five Whys. 

4. Here's an idea that fixes all those problems.

Think of the shortest, simplest, and stickiest way to describe the product, solution, or idea. Think symmetry. The solutions you introduce here should mirror and resolve the core frustrations you set up earlier. 

5. So they can get the thing they really want.

Remind them what this is really all about. Remember it's not enough to just solve the business problems. You have to address the human need you mentioned earlier. This is actually the most important part of the messaging. It's where the motivation comes from. Don't undersell it.

6. Call to action.

What do you need them to do next? Be one-hundred percent crystal clear. Make action inevitable.

We hope you got value from this online version of our Story Workshop. If you want to experience the hands-on and in-person version, drop us a line and we'll get to talkin'. If nothing else, just remember rule #1.