Whether you are trying to make a sale, build a business relationship, or make a pitch for funding, all presentations have one common goal: to make a lasting impact. Presentations should not just be a set of bullet points on a slide, but an experience that makes an audience think long after they leave their chairs.
Would you like to win your audience over and make a lasting impact with your next presentation? Be sure to keep these four tips in mind.
- Remember the end goal. – There are many reasons why you would need to give a presentation, but the overall purpose should always provide something that your audience needs. Start the very first draft of your ideas with the end in mind by thinking about what you actually want audience members to do as a result of hearing you speak.
- Start with structure. – Consider the structure of your speech before you begin writing. For example, if you are selling something, talk about a problem that is faced by the industry or specific client you are selling to and then explain how your service or product solves the issue. If you are making a pitch for funding, consider using a timeline of events for the project. An outlined structure of the key points of your presentation will help you ensure that all of the important information that will help your audience understand the message is included. After outlining, then gather the necessary supporting data that will help make your presentation compelling and noteworthy.
- Add visuals, but be wary of too many bullet points. – It is very tempting to add every important fact, statistic, and bit of information to your supporting visuals in bullet point format, but it is best to avoid this public speaking “faux pas.” Images have a much more resounding effect with an audience than visual text does, so try using unique photos in your slides. Your audience is not there to read information off of a screen; they could have done that from the comfort of their own office. They are there to hear what you have to say.
- Rehearse until you are comfortable. – When you feel totally confident in your presentation and delivery, you will be able to then focus on your audience. Try to perfect your timing, emphasis, pauses, and anything else that could trip you up while delivering your speech. Rehearse not only your speech itself, but also with the equipment that you will be using.
These four tips sound basic, but will help you win your audience over and create a lasting impact.
Would you like to further refine your public speaking skills? Communispond is now offering Executive Presentation Skills® – Part 2 to help alumni of our Executive Presentation Skills® programs further enhance and apply their skills. Contact us today for more information on our training solutions.