Character Skills and Talents: Promotion

As writers, we want to make our characters as unique and interesting as possible. One way to do this is to give your character a special skill or talent that sets him apart from other people. This might be something small, like having a green thumb or being good with animals, to a larger and more competitive talent like stock car racing or being an award-winning film producer. 

When choosing a talent or skill, think about the personality of your character, his range of experiences and who his role models might have been. Some talents might be genetically imparted while others are created through exposure (such as a character talented at fixing watches from growing up in his father’s watch shop) or grow out of interest (archery, wakeboarding, or magic). Don’t be afraid to be creative and make sure the skill or talent is something that works with the scope of the story. 

PromoterDescription: a person who uses enthusiasm, product knowledge, and compelling reasoning to sway an audience to invest in a product, brand or service. A promoter drums up business and sales, raising awareness and facilitating discoverability. To do this, they effectively utilize different forms of communication: in person events, one-on-one solicitation (such as a phone call or door-to-door selling), written communication (emails, letters and advertisements), as well as virtually using social media. 

Beneficial Strengths or Abilities: A good promoter has strong hygiene, dresses appropriately for interacting with one’s audience, is well spoken and has strong product knowledge. Knowing how to read people and their moods well and be able to juggle multiple action items at one time are both important. Having a strong sense of presence, good manners and posture, a pleasing sense of humor and being genuine are all strong qualities that will help a promoter succeed at getting the word out about one’s message. The most important aspects in promoting is the desire to help the audience and believing in what one is selling, as that passion will come through to others. Understanding preferred forms of communication (in person, online, email, phone, etc.) of one’s audience and being well versed in these methods allows the promoter to be effective when getting his or her message across.

Character Traits Suited for this Skill or Talent: Extroverted, Passionate, Genuine, Outgoing, Enthusiastic, Focused, Hard Working, Shrewd, Intelligent, Organized, Friendly, Courteous, Confident, Creative, Persuasive (in the short term: deceptiveness, questionable ethics and manipulative deceitfulness may all be of benefit, but in the long term, the truth will come out.)

Required Resources and Training: Public speaking, working as a team, researching the market and competing products, understanding how ads work and psychology behind decision-making, looking at things from the audience’s view to what they need and want so one can best slant promotion to fit these needs, being well versed in online etiquette and social media

Associated Stereotypes and Perceptions:

  • that promoters are pushy and refuse to take no for an answer*
  • they talk more than they listen*
  • they are motivated by “what’s in it for me” instead of “what’s best for the audience/customer”*
  • they use social media poorly by shouting “promotional white noise” instead of engaging with people*
  • they do what they are told by employers, even if they morally disagree *

(*note, many “perceptions” are actually “misconceptions,” simply because of the tendency to judge all promoters by the actions of a few)

Scenarios Where this Skill Might be Useful:

  • a career in sales
  • job interviews
  • working on a political campaign
  • working in advertizing
  • being one’s own advocate

Resources for Further Information:

A few things to know about being a Promo Girl

The Art of Shameless Self-promotion

Promoting Your Product or Service

You can brainstorm other possible Skills and Talents your characters might have by checking out our FULL LIST of this Thesaurus Collection. And for more descriptive help for Setting, Symbolism, Character Traits, Physical Attributes, Emotions, Weather and more, check out our Thesaurus Collections page.

photo credit: Andrew Stawarz via photopin cc


Angela is an international speaker and bestselling author who loves to travel, teach, empower writers, and pay-it-forward. She also enjoys dreaming up new tools and resources for One Stop For Writers, a library built to help writers elevate their storytelling.
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5 Responses to Character Skills and Talents: Promotion

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  3. Julie Musil says:

    Oh, this would be THE skill to have! The folks who do this, and who genuinely love the product or event they’re promoting, are sooo effective.

  4. This would be useful in the right setting.

  5. :Donna Marie says:

    LOL…you’ve basically described my brother (for the most part lol) 🙂 Thanks for this 😀

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