A Pyramid Scheme For Better Ratings

 In Blog

by Jeff McHugh

Actually, we’re joking – it’s not a pyramid like that. “Freytag’s Pyramid” is a centuries-old method of storytelling that’s worth revisiting as you prepare content. To demonstrate it, let’s reach for a Budweiser.

You may recall the touching Budweiser Super Bowl commercial about a puppy who made friends with a horse. The puppy was being given away to a new home until the Budweiser Clydesdales heroically intervened. The puppy and horse lived happily ever after. The end.

You can use that same framework of Freytag’s Pyramid to tell stories on your show by outlining the various points within the story where the action, motivation and conflict change course.

The five points of the Pyramid are:

1. Exposition – inciting moment

2. Complication – rising action

3. Climax – the turning point

4. Reversal – falling action

5. Denouement – moment of release

If you have learned The Execution Rule Of Four in one of our workshops, you may recognize that as a simpler version of Freytag’s Pyramid for outlining the content on segments of your show and for multi-segment content that goes on for several quarter-hours.

It’s another example of how the basics of storytelling relate to helping you create more memorable content on your show.  To learn more, check out this recent Harvard Business Review article on the Power Of Storytelling.

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