How to present your event using storytelling

How to present your event using storytelling

When you plan an event, you con­stant­ly have to present it, in writ­ing or ver­bal­ly. This requires the use of sto­ry­telling, a tech­nique that has quick­ly become a mar­ket­ing favourite over the past few years. Have you ever won­dered how your sto­ry­telling — or even your sto­ry — is high­light­ed when you present your event? It allows you to build, beyond your event alone, a boom­ing com­mu­ni­ty with an inter­est in your sto­ry — past, present and future. In this arti­cle, we will look into how event plan­ners can use the pow­er of sto­ry­telling to bet­ter present their event and con­vince atten­dees.

What is event storytelling?

Let’s start with clar­i­fy­ing the term — event sto­ry­telling com­bines all the ele­ments that will help your atten­dees cre­ate an emo­tion­al bond with your event. It is the sto­ry that human­is­es what you do and what you say to your audi­ence on a deep­er lev­el than that of a trans­ac­tion alone. To make it sim­ple, the least human mes­sage would be the fol­low­ing: “We sell shoes, you should buy our shoes”.

Why should you tell your event’s story?

You may have sold your event’s tick­ets real­ly suc­cess­ful­ly with­out even think­ing about your event’s sto­ry. So why start now? Well, first of all you have prob­a­bly already built a strong sto­ry­line around your event with­out real­is­ing it, which is great! You can now put it on paper to main­tain con­sis­ten­cy in the future and across your com­mu­ni­ca­tion chan­nels — and thus pro­vide a guide­line to your future new hires.

What are the questions to ask yourselves before presenting an event

Each event has their own sto­ry. Here are a few ques­tions to help you think about it. Write down your answers in a doc­u­ment if you are the event founder, or record an inter­view of that per­son. Then share it with your team.

  • Where and when was your event first launched?
  • Why did you cre­ate the event?
  • What did you and the oth­er team mem­bers do before this?
  • What were you hop­ing for in cre­at­ing this event?
  • How dif­fi­cult was it to launch the event — what chal­lenges did you over­come?
  • How has your event evolved and devel­oped?
  • Who are your atten­dees and why do they attend your event?
  • What are the goals you have achieved thanks to your event?
  • What is your mis­sion and what are your goals for the future?

Write down where you are from and where you are going on paper to define a strate­gic ori­en­ta­tion. This will help you iden­ti­fy who is well suit­ed to join the adven­ture.

Who are you writing the presentation for?

To iden­ti­fy the sto­ries that will enthrall your par­tic­i­pants, you should think beyond their demo­graph­ics — age, gen­der, pro­fes­sion, income, etc. — and under­stand who they are as peo­ple. To do this, you should iden­ti­fy their char­ac­ter­is­tics as well as their under­ly­ing needs. For instance:

  • ambi­tious exec­u­tive wish­ing to accel­er­ate their career;
  • tired par­ent look­ing for “me-time”;
  • young adult dis­en­chant­ed with tech­nolo­gies and want­i­ng to find love “in real life”.

What will catch their atten­tion? what bores them? what chal­lenges do they face? what are they afraid of? what are their dreams? The more you know your audi­ence, the eas­i­er it will be for you to catch their atten­tion. You can then empha­size a spe­cif­ic part of your sto­ry for each pro­file to help you achieve dif­fer­ent goals.

What is your event’s standard profile?

Now that you have iden­ti­fied the char­ac­ter­is­tics of your audi­ence, it is time to turn your atten­tion to your­self. Imag­ine your event as a per­son: give it a name if it helps, then write down their descrip­tion. What do they look like? Do they wear trendy or clas­sic clothes? What polit­i­cal par­ty would they sup­port? What bands would they like? Would they spend their hol­i­days explor­ing the unknown or read­ing a book on the beach?

While these ques­tions may seem ridicu­lous, they help you build a real per­son­al­i­ty for your event. It then becomes much eas­i­er to find your tone of voice and write your event’s descrip­tion.

How does your event’s story influence your communication?

Your goal is to tran­scribe your event’s sto­ry every time your audi­ence receives a mes­sage from you, what­ev­er the com­mu­ni­ca­tion chan­nel — online or in per­son, through your web­site or Weezevent min­isite, your social media, your ads, at reg­is­tra­tion, through your cus­tomer ser­vice and in your post-event thank you notes.

It is not about hav­ing a con­sis­tent tone of voice — it is about con­tin­u­al­ly inspir­ing your audi­ence to com­mu­ni­cate your val­ues. The sto­ry of your event should always tell a beau­ti­ful sto­ry, tell per­son­al tales and trig­ger emo­tion­al respons­es.

For instance, if you post a back­stage pic­ture of your event, use it to tell a sto­ry such as “Céline, our event plan­ner, spilled some cof­fee on her lap­top then was stuck in the lift for 30 min­utes. A bad day at Even­tOr­ga = cook­ies 🍪”. Even the most seri­ous of events can gain sym­pa­thy and increase its audi­ence engage­ment by telling a sto­ry that res­onates with peo­ple.

Finding inspiration to tell your story

Trans­form­ing your event’s com­mu­ni­ca­tion with mul­ti­ple sto­ries can seem like a chal­lenge but you don’t have to tell only your own sto­ry — your audi­ence can be a won­der­ful source of inspi­ra­tion. Shar­ing real sto­ries of atten­dees can cre­ate trust and loy­al­ty. It is the best way to show the ben­e­fits of your event on your audi­ence. Includ­ing your audi­ence to the sto­ry of your event and to your com­mu­ni­ca­tion will always be proof of authen­tic­i­ty.

Conclusion

We all love a good sto­ry. If you want your audi­ence to stop and lis­ten, don’t bore them with facts and num­bers, give them a sto­ry they can hold on to. Put your audi­ence at the cen­tre of your sto­ry and you will have their full atten­tion.

Pre­sent­ing your event will have more impact if you com­mu­ni­cate with the right tools. What­ev­er stage you are at in your event plan­ning, Weezevent can help you. Make your life eas­i­er by click­ing on the but­ton below:

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