The 5 Elements of an Influential Story

The 5 Elements of an Influential Story

Nothing beats a great story.

It’s also the most effective way to influence someone. So today I want to walk you through the elements of a great story.

First, you have to know what your reader/listener already believes. Influential writing isn’t about convincing someone to think differently…

It’s about reinforcing and validating what they already believe.

You’re never going to convince a hardcore liberal Democrat that they need to support an abortion ban.

And you’ll never convince a card-carrying member of the NRA that there should be a ban on assault weapons.

(Side Note: If you read “assault weapons” then immediately recoiled and thought “They’re not assault weapons, Jason!” then you understand how powerful this principle is.)

Telling a great story comes down to conflict. What does the person want, and what is preventing them from getting it?

The difference between a great novel and stories that influence is that influential stories reinforce a value or belief. They have a purpose beyond entertainment.

Here Are the Elements of an Influential Story

  • Purpose

  • Goal (Intention)

  • Motivation (The Why)

  • Conflict (Obstacle)

  • Resolution



What is the value/belief you want to reinforce? (decisiveness, being courageous, investment in education?)


What does the hero of your story want? Do they want to start a business, get into better shape, repair a relationship?


This is one of the most overlooked aspects of an influential story. If your hero wants to run a marathon, WHY does he/she want to do that?

Motivation is important in influential storytelling because it provides context and creates an emotional connection between you and the reader.


What is the obstacle preventing your hero from achieving their goal? This can be a person(s) but it could also be their environment or mindset.



How did the hero overcome the obstacle and achieve their goal?

It’s helpful to have a list of philosophies and beliefs you want to reinforce. Then you can compile a list of stories that can be used to reinforce what you want your readers to believe.

In my upcoming Influential Writers Intensive, you’ll not only learn how to do this…

But you’ll be writing a bunch of influential stories to use for yourself.

You’ll learn my “18 principles of influential writing” and how to use them to create a cult-like following of true believers who will seek you out and buy from you again and again.

But don’t be mistaken – this is not a copywriting course.

This goes way beyond “Pretty Headlines” and the usual copywriting and persuasion strategies everyone else and their dog teaches…

It’s what I call a ‘red pill’ event because when we’re done you’ll never look at the world the same way again.

Even something as simple as a conversation between friends will take on an entirely new meaning when you’ve seen what I have to show you.

I’ll have more information out in the next few weeks as I finalize all the details.


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