If you struggle with public speaking its easy to get nervous, to panic and to lose your audience.
When you’re not used to presenting, commanding the attention of a room full of people can seem like a daunting task.
Here at All Good Tales, we hold a course which throws powerpoint in the bin and transforms people from robotic presenters to engaging storytellers. When you adopt this approach, you keep your audience hooked.
Here are three sure ways that you can make sure you don’t lose your audience during your next presentation.
Tell your story in three acts
Humans are hardwired for stories. We are surrounded by storytelling. Whether it is the book we’re reading or the Netflix show we’re currently bingeing they all follow the same structure.
Every story has three acts. These can be further explained at your beginning, your middle and your end.
When we’re telling a story many of us tend to wander. We include unnecessary details or get lost in act two and forget where our story was headed.
Follow this three-act structure will prevent that. Practice telling your stories ahead of the presentation. Know where Act 1 ends and the next begins. This will stop any unnecessary rambling and help keep your audience focused and engaged.
Think about what your audience wants to hear
Your audience wants to feel valued. They also want to know that this presentation has been made and tailored especially for them.
Before your presentation take some time to research your audience and come up with ways that you can relate to them. What industry are they in? What are the areas you can provide some guidance?
Make sure to include examples that are relevant to them.
If you are presenting to one company include references to their product and their website. Show that you have engaged with them and are tailoring your presentation to their needs.
Use a ‘change’ to grab attention
Regardless of how well you’re presenting an audience’s attention tends to wander. It is your job to keep their attention.
One of the best ways to do this is to change your presentation. Add in a new colour slide or a video or photo. Start talking to your audience and make sure they are engaging with the material.
Below are some sure-fire ways to mix up your presentation and grab attention:
- Use a bright, vivid colour for a slide – black writing with a bright yellow background works well.
- Change from listening to you to discussing a topic with the colleague next to them
- Change from sitting around a table to standing
- Show a short video
- Pause and keep the room silent after an important statement