How to Use Simple Story Structure to Create Compelling Content with Carol Cox: Podcast Ep. 057

How to Use Simple Story Structure to Create Compelling Content with Carol Cox Podcast Ep. #57

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Why use story structure? Simple: It’s what makes us human.

You want to make sure the content you’re sharing is compelling, keeps your audience interested to the end, and invites them to take action, whether you’re hosting a podcast, being interviewed on one, or giving a presentation.

Our brains are hard-wired to understand and respond to story structure. Think about the fairy tales you read as a kid and your favorite books and movies.

Like a good movie or book, the content we create should have a beginning, middle, and end that takes the audience from the setup of the situation with tension (Act I) to the big idea/angle/process/solution (Act II) and finally to the resolution, reward, and next steps (Act III).

The framework I’ve created and describe in this episode is based on classic 3-act story structure and the hero’s journey but – this is key – applied in a business and marketing context, so that your audience understands what’s in it for them and the transformation you can help them achieve.

You can use this framework when:

  • Outlining solo podcast episodes
  • Interviewing guests
  • Knowing which stories to share when you’re being interviewed
  • Speaking at groups, conferences, and workshops

Get the free PDF to Make Your Content E.P.I.C.

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This episode also marks my 1-year anniversary podcasting! I’ve enjoyed it tremendously, greatly appreciate all of you listeners, and am excited to continue to provide you with interesting and relevant content to help you on your speaking journey.


  • A straightforward step-by-step framework on how to use 3-Act story structure in your presentations, podcast episodes, and interviews
  • How to select the best kinds of stories to share and to ask your guests
  • How to tell stories in a way that advance the content and the points you’re making
  • Understanding why it’s crucial to realize and convey that you are not the hero of the story
  • How to create a story bank


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  1. Anne Walsh on August 15, 2018 at 7:37 pm

    Thank you Carol! I listened to this while on my evening walk. I was so excited to write notes, I walked home as fast as I could. The whole context of the Hero’s Journey is the piece I was missing for the introduction to my book and the structure for my Signature Talk. Thank you so much, very helpful!!!

    • Avatar photo Carol Cox on August 17, 2018 at 3:07 pm

      So glad to hear this, Anne!

  2. Vickie on September 8, 2018 at 11:14 am

    I can’t seem to find the free PDF of the story structure. The link above doesn’t work. I would really like to see it. This episode was great in easily explaining how to structure a presentation. I’m thinking of how to apply it to longer presentations, such as for a 3 week class. Thank you.

    • Avatar photo Carol Cox on September 8, 2018 at 3:31 pm

      The PDF download should be working now. Thanks for letting me know!

  3. Annie Dickerson on October 1, 2018 at 1:55 pm

    This is so helpful, Carol! I love the energy you bring to your podcasts and will definitely check out the PDF to help frame my next presentation. Thank you!

    • Avatar photo Carol Cox on October 1, 2018 at 5:06 pm


      So glad to hear the podcast and PDF are helpful!

  4. Eva Brunner on November 9, 2019 at 7:11 am

    Dear Carol!
    By recommendation of a friend I found your podcast and the very right episode to listen to! Getting ready to focus on what content I will provide for my first (ever!) public speech (of 20 min) at a women’s conference. What a treasure your podcast is – practical, fresh and understandable for me! I’m getting really excited to put my (piles of) notes in the structure and follow the story line – problem-process-reward! – this is going to be so helpful.
    Forwarded your podcast to my daughter! Your natural, warm and very profound and experienced way to speak about huge topics in a way that “normal” people as me can get so much out of it is a blessing! I will listen to more of it! Best, Eva

    • Carol Cox Carol Cox on November 11, 2019 at 12:55 pm

      Hi, Eva,

      Thank you so much for your kind note. I’m so glad to hear the podcast has been helpful.

      Congrats on your upcoming speaking engagement! Please let me know how it goes.



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