A presentation is a demo, or dialogue meant to inform, persuade, or construct good will. A presentation allows immediate interaction between all the participants like your clients, boss, management or colleagues. The success of a presentation is determined by the speaking skills, content selection, design of the presentation, self-confidence and many other things. A good presenter can attract the attention of the audience and forces them to take action.
I’ve written about having great presentations many times, but in this article I’ll discuss about the things that make up the best presentation.
1. Don’t deliver a speech.
You must be clear on the purpose of your presentation, don’t give a speech but always use a conversational tone while presenting. No one wants to listen to a boring presentation. Don’t just recite the information but deliver an engaging speech that connects with your audience. A best presentation demands more engagement and interaction. You have to provide specific knowledge to your audience that they can’t get anywhere else and deliver it in an interactive way.
2. Get personal
Personalizing your speaking skills would allow your audience to perceive you as an individual, with a strong point of view. Generally, people respond to individuals who seem to speak as people. While giving a presentation, your objective should be engaging your audience, not to give a speech. Be self-confident and energetic to give the presentation in a conversational way. If your presentation failed to involve the audience, they will start to feel disconnected.
3. Use emotional appeals
Using emotional appeals in a presentation is one of the most effective ways to persuade an audience. The reason to use this tactic is; we all are driven by our feelings and thoughts, it is important to influence emotions and minds. Strong emotional appeals in a communication can help in changing attitudes and behaviors of the people. The emotions aren’t used to some reason, but they are always used to force an action. Best presentations are memorable. Use graphics, animations, images, and facts in your presentation to make it more understandable to your audience.
4. Telling Stories
The best speakers use stories and narratives to explain and strengthen the main points of the presentation. Stories are easier to remember and they make the presentation unique. People always tend to listen stories to perceive any information and hate lectures. Unlike facts and figures, stories speak to the heart, and a best presenter uses stories in his or her presentation to illustrate difficult points and to help people make an emotional connection to the message.
5. Keep it simple yet attractive
Always try to keep the presentation simple, by examining the content on each slide. Make it attractive by building your presentation around the main idea and include related graphics and keep the formatting consistent. Identify the main three or four major points about your topic and illustrate them. The more you keep it simple the more easy your audience will perceive the information.
6. Use the 20/20 rule
Practice and time your presentation, to build more confidence and make a strong grip on it. Read your speech and watch your presentation at least 20 times or more. You should be familiar about next slide of the presentation and memorize your points to discuss the slide. Concise your presentation to 20 minutes or lesser. Practice your presentation to make sure you finish it within the allotted time, including questions at the end.
7. Use signposts
To make a presentation effective, attention-grabbing and easy to understand is to use signposts. ‘Signpost language’ is the words and phrases that a speaker use to guide the audience through the presentation. A good presenter usually uses a lot of signposts, which is usually fairly informal and relatively easy to understand.
Here are some of the examples
To begin with, first of all, ‘secondly”, ‘finally’, ‘as you might know’, ‘that means’, ‘on the contrary’, ‘on the other side’, ‘moving on to’, ‘let us now turn to’, ‘furthermore’, ‘to sum up’, etc.
Remember, a good presenter engages the audience and understands his topic. Use graphics, emotional appeal and signposts to reinforce your point. For your audience your slide show is not the presentation — you are the presentation.