How to do a presentation interesting

 

Does the thought of speaking in front of others send you running in the opposite direction? You’re not alone. Many people avoid public speaking at all costs – and there is a cost. Public speaking is one of the quickest, most efficient ways to market yourself, your message, business, or cause. Those who are willing to make presentations immediately stand out from the majority who are not. Whether it’s an audience of five people or 500, it’s worth it to invest in your skills.

 I’m convinced that anyone can improve and gain confidence by following a few simple techniques:

  1. Know Your Audience. Most presentations fail because the speaker      never took the time to find out anything about his audience. Knowing your      audience means finding out as much information as possible in advance so      that you can successfully match your message to their interests and needs.      Helpful information includes: gender breakdown, average age, and their      current or past experience with your topic. If it’s not possible to learn      your audience in advance, then at the very least, arrive early and spend a      few minutes meeting people. Or, begin your presentation by asking some      general questions like, “Who has experience with…?” This also helps to      calms nerves as you are taking the focus off you, and putting it on your      audience where it belongs.
  2. Forget Memorizing. One      of the biggest fears I’ve heard from my clients is that they’ll freeze up      and forget what comes next. That can happen if you try to memorize your entire      speech. All it takes is forgetting one word to trip you up. Instead, only      memorize the opening and closing. Looking directly at your audience when      you start and finish makes a strong, positive impression. For the middle      section, it’s fine to glance at note cards with bullet points, or refer to      your PowerPoint presentation to jog your memory. Do not, however, write      out your whole speech word for word! You’ll be tempted to read it instead      of connecting with your audience.
  3. Open with a Bang. It’s      important to grab attention immediately. A good opening sparks interests,      sets expectations, previews what’s to come, and offers benefits. There are      several ways to start: ask a question, tell a story, humor (careful with      this one unless you’re naturally funny), quotes, dramatic statistics, or      music/video. Give your audience a reason to listen, and build your      credibility as the best person to be speaking on this topic
  4. Make it Memorable. Signposting is a way to help your audience      follow and remember what you’re saying. Phrases that focus listening are:      “The point is this,” and “The most important thing to remember is.”      Another strategy is to number your points as in, “I’ll be offering three      ideas, the first one is…”
  5. Use Silence.      Audiences need time and space to digest your information. Silence in      speaking is like the white space on a written page; without it, the      information is overwhelming. Pause at the end of your sentences and after      delivering a dramatic point. It will increase the impact of your message.
  6. Encourage Participation. Back in school, who didn’t dread the teacher      who lectured non-stop or the church pastor who droned on and on? What was      missing was audience participation. Include your audience through      questions, exercises, and inviting their ideas. Not only will it keep      people more interested, it will take the pressure off you to carry the      whole load.
  7. In Closing.      Audiences are most likely to remember the last thing they hear. A strong      closing should be memorized and review your main points. Motivate the      audience to do something – take an action, ask a question, have an      emotional response, or think
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