Business Storytelling For Dummies
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There are various ways to deliver a key message and its associated actions in order to make your business story more memorable. Tag lines and tangible story triggers within a story are some ways to do this.

Fix the key message and action

To embellish a story’s key message, there are several options you can use to share it and move from the transition to the action statement (see bolded text):

  • Do you as narrator want to deliver the key message or do you want your character to deliver it?

  • Is there a question you can pose to your audience that will add power to your key message?

  • Is there a quotation you can use to lead into the key message, giving it greater weight?

  • Is there a personal reflection you can make that hammers home the key message’s point?

  • Do you want to repeat the key message several times or is there a short phrase you can repeat to make the takeaway more memorable?

Which of these approaches best fits with your story?

Identify tag lines

A tag line is a phrase that’s a memorable way to refer to your story. It could be an analogy, aphorism, or metaphor. It might be one theme from the story. It could also be the story’s key message.

Steer clear of using the tag line to title the story, though, if it’s also the key message. Why? It’ll give away the outcome and could cause people not to read or listen to it. This is what news reports do. To arrive at a tag line, think of the crux of the story or the key message. Note as many answers to these questions as you can.

  • Can you create a tag line without giving away the essence of the story?

  • What tone is important? Funny? Serious? How can a tag line help differentiate you, a product/service, or your organization?

  • What tag line might connect to what someone wants or needs to answer?

  • Can one of your story’s aphorisms or analogies be turned into a tag line?

  • How can you include LOTS, a metaphor, or contrast in the tag line?

We elected to use a tag line to title the story because it doesn’t allude to the key message. What tag line fits best with your story?

About This Article

This article is from the book:

About the book authors:

Karen Dietz, PhD, is a 25-year veteran in business storytelling consulting, training, and leadership, and organizational development. Lori L. Silverman offers business storytelling training, keynotes, and consulting. For 26 years, she's advised enterprises on strategic planning and organizational change.

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