The Four Pillars of Storytelling: Maximizing Your Storytelling Potential

In the marketing world today, the word storytelling has taken on a rather casual meaning. Every marketer has the desire to utilize the power of storytelling, but there is more to this buzzword than the logical formulas that are often presented.

There are countless blog posts and articles across the internet that claim to have the “secret formula” of storytelling. More often than not, they usually have the same content and advice: You need characters that you want to root for. You need to include conflict that keeps your audience at the edge of their seat. You need to follow a proper story arc that rises, climaxes, and falls with the main character’s journey. This advice follows the storytelling structure that we have all been accustomed to, but these logical formulas are proving to be obscuring the real story rather than clarifying it.

I am not saying throw away all of the structure that you have ever been taught in regard to storytelling, because it is important to have effective characters, conflict, and a definite story arc.  However, too much of these formulas can mask the message that you want your audience to see. The solution is not in your logic, but in your heart.

>You can begin by tapping into your own intuition. What do you believe in? What will you fight for? Answering these questions through storytelling will help you to do more than solely touch your audience; you will connect to them on a deeper level. The topics that tug at your heart are what your audience will identify with. So escape from the logic and focus on what you feel.
The four pillars of storytelling are a tool for storytellers to utilize when you are unsure if your story is reaching its full potential using emotion. The pillars are as simple as people, places, plot, and purpose, but it is how they are utilized in a story that makes each of them so powerful. Each component has its own role in the storytelling process, but it takes all four together to have a message that will really impact your audience.

Continue reading next week as I elaborate on each of these pillars and how using your beliefs, interests, and feelings will help you in your storytelling process and connect with your audience in the most effective was.
Blogger: Rachel Tripp

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