Why storyboards are incredible tools to communicate our concepts and ideas?

I have always liked presentation which are engaging and catch public’s attention. There are many ways to get that but one of the best ways is by telling stories. That’s because stories are one of the oldest and most powerful ways that human have to communicate. They have the power to make people feel what the character is feeling and so, feel more empathetic with them and understand much better the situation and problems they are facing.

In product or service design it’s really important to focus on the need or problem found in order to explain the idea or solution we want to present. Storytelling and above all, storyboards are the best way to explain all these and make other people easily understand the context or/and the solution.

I had the chance to live this experience in first person at the University. My team and I had to develop three different concepts for new public transportation in our city. In order to learn we decided to choose three different techniques for the presentation of our concepts. One for each concept. We tried to make the three of them visual, and also keep the same time for the three of them.

For the first concept we used a traditional 4 slide presentation, where we presented the insights gathered in the interviews, our How Might We Question and our solution for the problem found. For the second concept, we decided to start by asking the audience about their own experience regarding the second problem we faced and use pictures to emphasize the problem and make them feel more part of it. For the third and final concept we decided to use just a storyboard and nothing else with which we explained them both the context and problem found and also our solution.

Do you imagine which was the easiest to understand by the public and also the easiest to explain for us? Yes, it was the last one. Nobody doubt about the identified need and neither about the core ideas of our solution. Everyone was engaged with the story and the characters, they were feeling the same emotions and understanding perfectly their needs.

In conclusion, it’s clear how powerful it’s this tool to present your ideas, concepts, products and services to the audience. However, it’s also a time consuming tool which involves a lot of planning and work behind. First, you have to create the story with all its structure (exposition, rising action, crisis, climax, denouement and end) and afterwards, make it visual. And of course, you need some drawing skills in order to get it.

I give you here the example with our storyboard of the project I mentioned before and also the link to another example of storyboard developed in another concept developed in the same subject.

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