Storytelling Tip: You can’t convince everyone


Storytelling Tip: You can’t convince everyone
Today’s tip from JerryBrownPR’s storytelling tips on the Experience Pros Radio Show

By Jerry Brown, APR
Public Relations Consultant

Storytelling Tip: You can’t convince everyoneWhether you’re discussing politics, religion or why we should buy what you’re selling, you can’t convince everyone. And it’s usually a mistake to try.

Any time you’re trying to be persuasive, it’s a good idea to focus on:

  • Your supporters. They’re looking for reasons to help you.
  • The undecided. These are the people you’re trying to convince. If they’re interested in what you’re talking about, they’re looking for help in deciding what to do or believe. Focus most of your attention on this group because this is where your efforts are likely to have the biggest impact.
  • Persuadable skeptics/opponents. There usually are people who are skeptical or opposed to what you have to say, but are persuadable. It’s worth putting some effort into convincing them. But don’t spend all of your time with them. You’ll probably have to work hard for each convert. That time may be better spent trying to persuade the truly undecided.

And there’s almost always a group of people who simply aren’t buying what you’re selling. No matter how hard you try, you’re not going to convince them. So, don’t try.

We all see the world through a lens that tells us we’re right about the things we believe. And most of us want to help the rest of the world find the truth we think we already know.

A common mistake is to keep adding more arguments to what we’re saying because we think we can convince even the diehard skeptics by making just one more point.

But adding too many arguments may actually turn off people who would have been persuaded to support you if you had made one less point. And time you spend trying to persuade the unpersuadable is time you’re not spending with the people who are persuadable.

Don’t waste your time trying to convince everyone. It’s a losing proposition.

That’s my two cents’ worth. What’s yours?


Jerry Brown, APR, is a public relations professional and former journalist. He specializes in helping clients develop the content they need to tell their stories. He also helps them develop strategies for getting their stories heard, understood and remembered. And he provides media training and presentation coaching for clients who need to tell their stories to reporters or in front of an audience. 303-594-8016 |

Listen to Jerry’s Tips for Telling Your Story every Tuesday at 10:05 a.m., Mountain Time, on the Experience Pros Radio Show on KLZ 560AM in Denver or at on the Internet. Missed it on the air? Listen to the archived tips.

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