We have completed audience analysis, objective setting, defined the biggest problem and overall solution, and collected all our eveidence. Now we are going add some stories or anecdotes.
Abela (2008) describes anecdotes this way:
“The idea here is not to replace the evidence you have gathered, but to emphasize it. A story is not proof; it is just illustration. A story doesn’t prove anything, but it does get your audience’s attention and can sometimes drive a point home much more than reams of data.”
Why do stories work? In the following diagram from David Yang, imagine your life running along the horizontal axis, with a couple of blips. That’s what its like for most of us. Now look at the Cinderella story which is the green line – very dynamic and engaging and most importantly memorable.
So the more interesting and engaing our anecdotes the more likely they are to be remembered. The good part is they dont even have to be true – they can be hypothetical. Which is only ok if you tell your audience.
Yang, D 2019, Kurt Vonnegut on the Shapes of Stories | Visual.ly, visually, viewed 22 Jan, <https://visual.ly/community/infographic/other/kurt-vonnegut-shapes-stories>.
Abela, AV 2008, Advanced presentations by design creating communication that drives action, San Franiso, Calif. : Pfeiffer, San Francisco, Calif.