• Rain Bennett

Ep. 46: How to Use Comedy in Your Storytelling with Kathy Klotz-Guest

Updated: Nov 28, 2020

This week’s guest is Kathy Klotz-Guest, Keynote Speaker, Story Strategist, Author, and Improv Comedian. You may not think about it but comedians are some of the best storytellers on earth! Rain and Kathy discuss raising the stakes in your storytelling, yes-and-ing your clients, and incorporating comedy and improv into your marketing strategies.



If you’ve been following The Storytelling Lab for a while, have seen me speak, or have read any of my content, you’re probably familiar with how much I talk about comedians and their use of storytelling techniques.

That’s because comedians are usually great storytellers!

I often speak about Jerry Seinfeld’s philosophy on cutting jokes down, or how Alan Alda uses improv practices to teach scientists how to tell the stories of their discoveries.

Well this week on the show I hosted Kathy Klotz-Guest, who is an improv comedian, speaker, and author that uses her skills to help people tell the stories of their brands.

She gets it.

Not only does she get it, she teaches it!

Through her brand “Keeping It Human,” Kathy uses improv exercises to help people and companies understand how to communicate effectively to their customers -- other humans!

In improv comedy, there is a concept called “Yes, and.” “Yes, and” means that whatever your partner -- and in business, that’s your client -- presents to you as the scenario, you have to build upon that.

You can’t reject it. You must meet in the middle,

say “yes” and then add something of value.

So instead of competing with your clients and telling them that “this is what you should do,” we should listen from a place of empathy (a human place) to understand their needs, their values, and what they are bringing to the table.

We “Yes, and” to meet them where they already are and to build with them.

Kathy and I also talked about how using comedy can be a successful way to start the conversation, but at the end of the day, we also have to bring real truth and real value to our clients.

“The best storytelling I know, even in business, is about the absolute truth.”

If we break down what improv comedy is really about -- a pas de deux, or “dance for two,” if you will -- then we can understand creative ways to make a connection with our clients and can work together to solve any problems they may be having with their communication or marketing.

If you’ve ever wanted to learn more about comedy, or you’ve heard me talk about how it can help you be a better storyteller but weren’t sure exactly how,

this episode will teach you effective improv comedy techniques to connect more deeply with your clients!

Some highlights from our conversation:

  • What Keeping It Human means & why it matters right now

  • An update on the COVID crisis: Rethinking things in the midst of this transition period

  • Bridging the gap through storytelling

  • Kathy’s background in tech marketing

  • Kathy’s journey into storytelling

  • Why the “human stuff” matters the most in transactional communication

  • There’s more than the day-to-day ROI speak

  • Why data needs to be wrapped into your story

  • How Kathy mixes storytelling with comedy

  • Having a clear point of view in your storytelling

  • The difference between theme and story

  • The difference between stand up and improv

  • How comedy and improv require an amazing amount of listening

  • Incorporating crowd work into your speaking

  • How to “yes and” whatever cards we are dealt: we can also think about this in the midst of our current COVID pandemic

  • Why we need to start listening more

  • Why you should think about what your audience is going through & their current needs

  • Using EMPATHY in your marketing

  • Taking the opportunity to be different

  • Honoring your long term goals

  • Using improv in marketing & consulting

  • Why storytelling in business doesn’t need to be transactional

  • Improv exercises you can use to better tell your brand story

  • Raising the stakes

  • Story Spine: a tool to structure your story

  • Finding the Protagonist: don’t make yourself the protagonist in your story

  • Why you need to use Pattern Disruption: very five minutes your brain adapts. Don't let your audience get bored!

  • Why details are your friend

  • The line to how much comedy we can use in our business storytelling

  • Looking at storytelling through a funnel

  • Comedy as a great device for when you want to do something different

  • Comedy as truth: Think about the truths you want to tell

  • Going back to the basics of what make us human

As always, I hope you enjoy the episode!

Peace and Love,



Follow Kathy on Twitter @kathyklotzguest

And learn more about her work at

For more storytelling tips and tricks,

Follow us on Instagram @sixsecondstories

Visit our website

Hosted by Rain Bennett (@rainbennett | Twitter) (

#podcast #thestorytellinglab #storytelling #valuesfirst


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