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Learning From T.V. Shows Pt. 2

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Learning From T.V. Shows Pt. 2

Last week I challenged you as a communicator to learn from NBC’s hit drama, The Blacklist. I encouraged you to win the attention of your audience the way it does—by demanding it on the sensory level with regular surprises and changes of pace. Now I want to look at a much better show—Breaking Bad. 

Like The BlacklistBreaking Bad always competes for our attention effectively on a superficial level. The show deals with edgy subject matter. It is often violent, and thrives on shocking plot twists. 

And yet, it always returns to something deeply human—and that's where it truly wins our ongoing attention. It doesn't shy away from complexity and meaning. It spotlights deep fears.

In Breaking Bad, one way or another, we see ourselves.

The point: to be an effective communicator in the age of distraction, you have to master both levels of attention. Superficial and stimulus-driven; as well as that driven by meaning and emotion.

How can you add a level of emotional and thoughtful depth when you communicate?

How can you use stories, quotes, and questions to engage to the hearts and imaginations of your listeners? 

 

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Learning from T.V. Shows, pt 1.

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Learning from T.V. Shows, pt 1.

OR WHY YOU KEEP WATCHING THE BLACKLIST EVEN THOUGH IT KIND OF SUCKS

If you watched the recent Super Bowl you probably remember NBC’s commercial for The Blacklist—it was hard to miss. For 50 unrelenting seconds, you were held captive by a kind of visual and auditory shock and awe

The show is like this, too. Rarely does an episode allow for more than a few lines of dialogue to go by without a helicopter sweeping in to save you from your boredom. And it works-- The Blacklist consistently wins viewership because it always keeps in mind our desire for new and novel stimulus. It’s as committed to constant change and surprise as shows with lesser ratings are to solid storytelling and scripts.

The point: if you are going to win people’s attention in the digital age, you have to learn from The Blacklist, and demand it on the sensory level. You must embrace the approach of shock and awe.

How have you become predictable as a communicator? 

How can you integrate new and novel surprises into your routines?

How can you make your message memorable by taking advantage of our wish to be entertained?


Part 2 Coming Soon


 

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