Bring it On Home – 5 Tips for Crafting Plot-Driven Presentations


Imagine you’ve followed Brian’s 5 Tips for Transforming Presentations into Conversations, and the audience is totally locked in. You’re riding the elevated zen of your speaker’s high like an amped up Tony Robbins on a space station. Your presentation is going great and you’re finally ready to execute tip number 5: Bring it on home.

There’s just one problem: You don’t know where home is.

1 – Home is where you start

You can’t craft an effective presentation without knowing where home is. Home isn’t the ask. Home is the core idea that everyone in the room needs to accept before saying yes to your ask. The ask is in home’s backyard. Every aspect of your presentation should be leading viewers to this place. Don’t start building your presentation until you identify home.

2 – Lead the journey

Leading viewers to home doesn’t mean you drop a lawyerly procession of fact bombs. It means you need to tell a story, complete with background, character development and an arc. You may be the best presenter in the world, but if you can’t write a story, you won’t lead your audience home.

3 – Storytelling 101

Stories work when viewers accept the storyteller’s viewpoint. The zombies don’t appear out of thin air, there’s a background story. The zombie killing hero doesn’t just start lopping off undead heads with steely determination. We learn the hero’s flaws, failings and potential before his heroism is realized. The conclusion to a great story only works when the viewer believes the storyteller’s version of events long before the story ends.

4 – Start with the prequel

Once you know where home is – where your story will conclude – you need to decide what background info is needed to make your tale believable. This might best be done by including information that at first seems extraneous to your audience. Think of some of your favorite stories. The early scenes don’t always seem relevant, but they build support for the storyteller’s viewpoint. Don’t fear bringing in information seemingly unrelated to your topic if it will help the audience understand your ultimate viewpoint better. To introduce a background story, try this phrase “Before we talk about ____, I think it’s helpful for us to ______.”

5 – Don’t forget your one true home

Bold branding is about creating a clear, unique perception your customer’s mind. This is done through consistency and staying on message. Your customers should know exactly what your brand stands for. Don’t get so wrapped up in winning the presentation that you stray from this place. To be a bold a brand you’ll have to produce a hundred sequels. One errant plot turn can spoil the entire franchise. Know where you want to end up and boldly go there. We all have just one place we call home. Your brand does too.

About the Author

Eric-MineartEric Mineart is Vice President of Marketing at Pacific Retirement Services, a Medford, Oregon-based organization that helps individuals enjoy healthy, stable and secure retirement experiences. A designer by trade, Eric develops creative campaigns with a designer’s eye and a storyteller’s wit, helping clients tell brand stories that connect with audiences. Eric is a graduate of Savannah College of Art & Design. Connect with Eric on LinkedIn.

About Punch

Punch Digital Strategies is a creative agency for bold brands. We provide digital marketing strategy that helps clients brand for growth and engage with customers online. We design websites that inspire action, and help clients generate leads through content marketing and social media. With services tailored to meet the needs of start-ups, B2C, B2B and non-profit organizations, we make bold brands stand out.

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