Lebron James Empowers His Message with Story Structure

Douglass and Lisa-Marie Hatcher
1 min readApr 23, 2021

I saw this very personal Lebron James ad about hunger while watching TV last night.

You’ve probably seen it.

The ad (below) is powerful, but it’s also instructive. It’s a perfect example of how story structure can help drive home your message.

The ad follows what’s called the “And-But-Therefore” (A-B-T) story structure beautifully. This is something I first learned about from scientist-turned-filmaker, Randy Olson.

Here’s how A-B-T works:

1️⃣ (Here’s the AND part which is your opening or problem statement):”Hunger is something way too many kids and families struggle with. I was one of those kids. Growing up my mom did everything she could to help keep food on out table.”

2️⃣ (Here’s the BUT part which signals a change or a turn in the story):”But she couldn’t have done it without the support of our community.”

3️⃣ (Here’s the THEREFORE part which is the resolution. THEREFORE can be signaled with THAT’S WHY, or SO, or FINALLY):”That’s why, Walmart’s ‘fight hunger, spark change’ program means so much to me.”

💡The And-But-Therefore structure is super simple but powerful. Those of you who’ve taken our storytelling course will recognize A-B-T as StoryHack №1.✍️

How might you use the A-B-T structure?



Douglass and Lisa-Marie Hatcher

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