When you hear a story, what do you remember most about it?

It’s usually the people in it. Circumstances or situations become interesting because there is
a relatable character or characters within them.

Have you ever read a great book and felt that the characters in it were almost part of your
life too? And when the book is finished, you feel a bit lost without them?

That’s great storytelling.

Whenever you are giving a business presentation, your job is to story tell and create images
for your audience that help your story to come to life. Creating characters is a great way to
achieve this.

In this article, I’m going to share with you techniques on how to create characters and
simple strategies to help you bring them to life for your audience.

Make your characters relatable
To give your characters qualities that captivate and compel the audience, they need to be
instantly relatable. Even the hero of your story should have flaws and weaknesses to make
them more likeable and relatable.

Determine what your hero’s goals and motivations are – and more importantly what’s
getting in their way of achieving these?

Give your characters a backstory

What has shaped your character into the person he is today? You won’t have time to go into
your character’s back story, but it’s important that YOU, the storyteller, know what their
backstory is. The more detail you know about this person, the better you will be at
portraying the character to your audience.

Write one succinct sentence about their backstory, keeping it relevant to your story. You
may want to use this to introduce your character to the audience.

Create dialogue
Good dialogue engages your audience. The conversation that takes place between the
characters not only brings your story to life, it also creates humor and allows you to change
pitch, pace and volume depending on who is speaking.

Think about the way your character’s voice sounds to the ear (such as pitch, volume,
placement and tone). Are they gentle, fierce, or authoritative when they speak? Whatever
choices you make, deliver them as an exaggerated version of that so it sets their voice apart
from yours, and other characters in your story.

Differentiate through gesture
You want the audience to be able to differentiate each character clearly, so when you are
speaking as that character use different gestures, stance and even use a different energy to
set them apart from each other.

This takes a lot of practice, but if you get it right, you will become an excellent storyteller.

Creating memorable characters takes a lot of practice. I go into much more detail about
how to create compelling characters in my master course, The Art of Persuasive Speaking
in Global Business.’

This is a course that you can take at your own pace and watch on demand to help you
become a master a business storytelling and global persuasive speaking.


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