Episode 156

How to Craft Persuasive Stories

In a small village, a young shepherd boy is given the task of guarding the sheep. He’s the type of boy who wants entertainment and perhaps even attention. So he suddenly cries out, “Wolf!”

Hearing this, all the villagers come rushing to his aid. When they arrive, there’s no wolf to be seen. So they get back to their daily lives.

Then they hear the boy cry “Wolf!” again. The villagers run over and still, they don’t see a prowling threat to their flock.

This happens again and again. They hear the “warning,” rush over, and each time they don’t find a wolf, their trust in the shepherd boy diminishes. 

Then, one day, a wolf does suddenly appear to threaten the sheep. When the boy cries “Wolf!” this time, the villagers ignore him. So the wolf is free to feast on the flock, and the boy is left with a hard lesson to learn about telling the truth.

Why does this well-known fable work so well as a memorable and persuasive teaching tool (in this case, for the importance of honesty)? In this episode of the Storytelling School Podcast, you’ll get a deeper look into why this fable works along with other powerful insights on how to craft persuasive stories. You’ll also hear examples of persuasive storytelling in action and discover answers to the following:

What are the important elements that make a story persuasive? How can storytellers balance facts and emotions to persuade effectively? And what common mistakes should you avoid making in persuasive storytelling?

…and much more!

What you will learn in this episode:

  • How the structure of your story contributes to its persuasiveness
  • How advertisers, brands, charities, and politicians use story elements to persuade your decisions
  • How persuasive story elements help take complex or abstract issues and make them personal and compelling

A little bit about me.

Hi there. I’m Kymberlee.

As a Speaking Strategist and founder of Storytelling School, I’ve had the pleasure of working with over 500 speakers, business leaders, and entrepreneurs worldwide for over a decade. No matter if those folks were getting ready to take the TED or TEDx stage or preparing for a high-stakes presentation with everything on the line, my specialty is High Stakes Short Form Communication. I’ve seen what works when influencing change and what doesn’t. It turns out storytelling is one of the most powerful tools you can have in your arsenal. That’s why I’m building a movement of master storytellers to affect change in the world on a global scale to help people tell real stories that have influence and impact. With effective storytelling, you change people’s lives.

Since competition for potential client attention is fierce, a story can make the difference between being memorable or irrelevant. You’ll find me sharing my matcha tea mishap to discuss perfectionism, my quest for Bruce Lee and Hello Kitty art to explore kindness, or the six months of live blade training I underwent to illustrate presence. I spend my days showing the power of using stories to help cement ideas and bring lessons to life and teach my clients to do the same.

If you think business owners can’t tell stories or don’t have stories to share with their clients, staff, donors, followers, or investors, I invite you to reconsider your perspective. There’s no better place than in business to tell your stories so audiences, no matter how big or small, can understand how you think and what you value.

Now it’s your turn… If you’re ready to become a master storyteller and effect change in our world, you’ve come to the right place.

Want to take your storytelling skills to the next level?

I've got your back!

Learn how to craft a story that will make your brand unforgettable

The Proven 5-step process to captivate any audience


my proven 5-step process for short-form storytelling that you can apply to your stories forever


and craft your own Spotlight Story that you can use in a plethora of scenarios


on where and why to use storytelling in a variety of business situations to become unforgettable


clarity on the most common mistakes storytellers make and learn how to avoid those

...and so much more!

I want to stand out!

The best storytellers are memorable for a reason.

Traver Boehm

2-time TEDx Speaker, Author, Coach, and Founder of the Uncivilized Movement

Mo Barrett

TEDx Speaker, Anecdotist, Connector, Mischief-maker, Retired Military Commander, Keynote Speaker

Katy Stevens

Musician, Performer, Recording Artist, Voice Teacher

Greg Smith

TEDx Youngstown Organizer and Voice Coach, Chairman and CCO of Compco

Than Baardson

Entrepreneur, Speaker, Connector, CEO of Unseen, Humanitarian

Cathy Sommerville

TEDx Speaker, Coach, Advisor, Leader, Author, Vice President


I'm ready to stand out!