How to Give an
Giving a presentation in front of a group of people can be one of the most nerve wracking experiences. During such a critical situation, you must remain confident that you’re capable of sharing your ideas and teaching others about the topic at hand. Remember these easy steps in order to give a presentation that’s effective, interactive and unforgettable.
Diversify Your Material
Your goal as a presenter is to keep your audience on the edge of their seats. Unfortunately, people get distracted and their attention can wander to other things, making your job difficult. To counter these natural tendencies, you must diversify your content through sound, sight and evidence.
You have likely been the victim of a less-than-enthusiastic speaker with a monotone voice, and you probably didn’t remain engaged for the duration of the presentation. Adding variation in your volume and speaking rate will help keep your audience's attention and motivate them to listen closely. By speaking passionately about your subject with an expressive voice and inflections, your topic will really shine through. For most people, this style of speaking is not natural. Film yourself giving your presentation, then adjust your voice accordingly. With practice, you will feel more comfortable with this type of vocal variety.
Challenge yourself to think visually when it comes to providing visual material for your audience. Is there an image that could represent your point in a more powerful way? Is a diagram or a graph appropriate for your presentation? A useful way to find the best images is to look up and purchase stock photos online. By purchasing them, you won’t have to worry about copyright issues that could come back to bite you.
Evidence should be varied enough to support the claims in your presentation. Try providing three different types of evidence, such as a data point, a testimonial and an anecdote. This is valuable in order to reinforce your claim, and it allows your audience multiple opportunities to connect with your idea and remember it. This is why it's a technique often used by advertisers to reinforce that you should buy their product. Don’t forget to vary your voice with your evidence!
Know Your Audience
As a presenter, your job is to be in service to your audience. You need to be sure that you make your message relevant and easily understandable. Learn your audience's knowledge, expectations and dispositions, and then tailor your content to their needs, especially when presenting data.
Presenters sometimes deliver numbers devoid of context, making it hard for others to connect. When presenting data, you want to make sure you are telling a story so listeners can form a memory. It’s not just about sharing data, it’s about sharing what that data means. Giving context helps you explain your data more powerfully.
Using analogies is another effective way to make things relevant. This helps connect your content with information your audience already knows. By comparing new information to something your audience is already familiar with, analogies activate the audience's existing mental constructs, which allows for quicker information processing and understanding.
Use Emotion In Every Presentation
People will generally remember emotionally charged messages easier than fact-based messages. To be a good presenter, tell stories that show that you’re human too. Even if a story describes the success you’ve experienced, also talk about the struggles or failures. By doing so, you will give the audience an opportunity to connect with you and also remember what you’re presenting. Audience members will rely on their emotional experience to evaluate you and the message you’re trying to convey.
In terms of delivery, know what emotional impact you want to have on your listeners. Emotions are highly motivational, so think about how you want your audience to respond and then be sure to present in a way that will reflect that response. In other words, your tone needs to be compatible with the emotional impact you’re seeking. But, at the same time, you want to be authentic and not overly dramatic.
By adding emotion, relevance, and variety to your presentation, you can be sure your audience will remember the message you’re trying to convey. By using the techniques and approaches talked about, you should feel comfortable and confident in presenting which will only make your audience want more.