Listen up close today friends because I have a good one for you.
This thing I’m about to share with you is the number one secret weapon to great storytelling and building connection with your audience.
It’s the most underused trick yet every single one of us is fully capable of using it….
Any ideas what I’m talking about?
Listening. Yes…. listening.
If you look at some of the best storytellers of our time, they all use this skill with expert precision. Oprah, is someone who demonstrates this ability. Watch one of her interviews on her Super Soul Sunday series…. and pay attention to how intently she listens to her guests. You can visibly see her listening with her entire body. Her eyes are fixated on her guest. Her body leans in, her entire demeanor is engaged in the listening process.
And, this is why she is such a brilliant interviewer and journalist because she always has a follow question that pulls the story along and goes deeper.
She doesn’t just rattle off a list of pre-determined questions. She allows the spirit of the interview, and the story of her guest, guide the conversation.
So how can you listen more to your audience — especially if you are largely communicating digitally and on social media?
Ask really great questions. Questions that are simple and easy to answer is a great place to start. No one wants to be hit over the head with a complicated question …. Start with the easy stuff… and then listen. When people respond, don’t just say “that’s nice”… no!!! You ask a logical and smart follow up question — one that clearly shows you are listening to your audience.. … and you keep that back and forth going for as long as your audience is willing to participate.
Here’s the thing — exhibiting good listening skills, and asking great questions shows your audience that you are genuinely interested in them. It makes them feel special — because you are creating space for them to share their story and be heard.
And at the end of the day, that’ what storytelling allows us to do… it allows us to build community with one another. We can’t do that if we don’t take the time to get to know one another, and we do that by sharing our stories.
So take some time today and create some conversation starters with your audience by asking some simple questions.
Put your listening skills to use. It’s a muscle that must be exercised so keep up this practice and watch the engagement level with your audience rise.
I'd love to know how these tips are helping you, and how you are incorporating them into your own life and business. Drop me a quick message. You can email me: firstname.lastname@example.org or you can leave a quick Voice Mail by clicking on the button located on the sidebar of this page!
I love hearing from you -- and learning more about how you are incorporating storytelling into your world!