Audience Journey

Act 1 – Set-Up

Hero Journey 1Audience Journey 1

Hero’s JourneyAudience Journey1Here in the Ordinary World the Hero has limited awareness of a problem. Ignorance is bliss, perhaps.A likable audience is unaware they have a problem or opportunity.2The Hero receives a Call to Adventure. There is increased awareness that something more is desired.They are shown a unique idea that brings their world into an imbalance.3The Hero is initially reluctant, and might even Refuse the Call because they’re reluctant to change.They are skeptical, afraid, and resistant to adopt it because it will require change, and change is hard.

One of the things that makes an audience resistant is they can see how tough stages 6 through 11 are going to be. It’s your job to acknowledge that you know how tough the journey will be.

Act 2a – Confrontation

Hero Journey 1Audience Journey 2

Hero’s JourneyAudience Journey4But they are encouraged by a Mentor and begin to overcome their reluctance. (By the way, as the presenter, you are the Mentor.)But a presenter with experience, valuable insights, and magical tools will help on the journey. The audience will stay skeptical and won’t cross the threshold into your special perspective unless you have wisdom to guide them and a useful idea or tool to give them.5An important change has taken place. The Hero has moved from the Ordinary World into the Special World. They’ve crossed the Threshold and are committing to change.So they decide to jump in and commit to the idea.

Your goal is to get them to commit to crossing the threshold and adopting your perspective. Once the audience commits to jumping in, the real adventure begins.

6The Hero encounters Tests, Allies, and Enemies and begins to experiment with the first bit of change.Now the real work begins, but it’s hard. people and things oppose the effort to change.

Act 2b – Confrontation

Hero Journey 1Audience Journey

Hero’s JourneyAudience Journey7The Hero approaches the Inmost Cave and prepare for a big change.They are determined to push the idea forward and being to work on new skills to be successful.8And endure an Ordeal. They’re attempting big change.They take a major step toward your idea, and it doesn’t quite work out as they’d thought.

Their commitment will be tested, and they’ll need to renew their loyalty to the idea over and over before it’s reality.

9They take possession of their Reward. They feel the consequence of their attempt – the improvements and setbacks.They get discouraged and consider giving up on the idea, but they begin to see some benefit from their effort.

Act 3 – Resolution

Hero JourneyAudience Journey

Hero’s JourneyAudience Journey10They take the Road and cross back over to the Ordinary World. This threshold serves as a rededication to change.They decide to continue on with a renewed excitement, even though resistance around them is chronic.11They experience a Resurrection and are transformed by the experience.Utilizing their new tools, they try one final time to push the idea forward and are victorious.12Now that they’ve mastered the problem, they Return with the Elixir – a boon or treasure to benefit the Ordinary World.The idea is widely adopted and the galaxy is a better place.

Okay, Now What?

Next time you have a presentation to give, follow the path of the blue wheel, The Audience Journey. Show your audience an idea that brings imbalance. An idea that they now feel needs to be a part of their life. Know they’ll be skeptical but show them valuable insights and tools that will help them on the journey…

*My opening is a reinterpretation of the hero’s journey in The Hero with a Thousand Faces. “A hero ventures forth from the world of common day into a region of supernatural wonder: fabulous forces are there encountered and a decisive victory is won: the hero comes back from this mysterious adventure with the power to bestow boons on his fellow man.”

Images are © 2010 Nancy Duarte. All rights reserved.

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    I wrote my high school thesis on this! It was so much fun.
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