Storytelling is a natural way of processing information because stories are the primary medium through which we think, communicate, understand each other and make sense of our lives and society. They act as an effective means of exchanging information and communicating. As the human memory is story-based, messages and meaning conveyed through stories increase memorability. This is important because as tourism providers, we aim to create memorable experiences in order to stimulate positive word of mouth (online or offline) and repeat visits. Persuasive stories, told well, can engage tourists intellectually and emotionally, resonate with their personal values and make the visit personal, relevant and meaningful. Stories have the power to aid understanding, educate and entertain. They can immerse tourists in “intense moments”, removing them from their current reality and transporting them back in time through an unique and authentic experience.
The courses at The Hidden Story provide a comprehensive grounding in finding, telling and selling stories in tourism.
Here are some of our tips for creating memorable stories.
Create Familiarity: Relate story to what they already know as it is easier to build on existing knowledge rather than acquire a new information set
Create Relatability: Facilitate listeners to identify with the story by relating it to their personal lives – make it real for them
Create Drama: Highlight the dramatic development of the story through the animated performance of the storyteller – allow the drama to build anticipation and excitement
Facilitate Immersion: Encourage listeners to invest themselves in the story by triggering their imagination – create mental pictures with your words
Facilitate Mental Engagement: Allow listeners to fill in the gaps and work it some aspects of the story for themselves – keep them with you throughout the whole story
Facilitate Emotional Connection: Incorporate the emotional highs and lows of the story that facilitate emotional responses – allow them to empathize and emotionally respond to the past
Foster Participation: Get listeners physically and actively involved in the story through demonstrations and reenactment
Foster Rapport: Get to know them through interaction, conversation and questions
Employ Brevity: Keep your stories short and simple – avoid multiple messages
Employ Structure: Plan, rehearse and structure your story to aid understanding
Make it Personal, Relevant and Meaningful
What are your stories? What are the relevant and appropriate stories to tell? What makes a good story? How should you tell them? – The Hidden Story provides the answers to these questions through their training programmes and in working with business groups and communities to help them – Share their Stories!