We have all attended presentations that have either inspired you or put you to sleep. Whether it’s a PowerPoint, Prezi, or video presentation, here are six tips to knock your next performance out of the park:
- Be Relevant. If your presentation is about selling a service or a product, it is best if you don’t add content that doesn’t relate to the subject. The audience can feel as if you are wasting their time and their time is important too. Going off on tangents only confuses your viewers and they will not remember your important points. Put yourself in the shoes of your audience and think of what they would be interested in hearing from you. Stay focused on your agenda and stick to a maximum of three different points per presentation.
- Be Concise. The KISS rule works well with presentations (Keep It Simple Stupid). Adding too much copy and statistics muddies your message and will make each frame too cluttered and difficult to see. The audience will spend more time trying to read your content and less time listening to you. That brings me to the next tip…
- Make Text Legible. Using decorative or script fonts can be difficult to read. Keep them simple, bold and large enough to see from the back of the room. Upper and lower case words are easier on the eye than all caps, so only use all caps for headlines or when you really need to emphasize a statement.
- Use Animation Wisely. Animation can be a great way to keep the audience’s interest. However, some people use too much of it, which can look less professional. Used wisely, it can add dimension and prominence to a stagnant slide show or boring video.
- Stop Reading. If you read the copy that is on each slide, there is really no reason for you to be there. Your audience usually knows how to read. The image should enhance and reinforce your important message. If your image is a chart, make sure it is legible and easy to follow. Then tell them something about the information that they don’t see on the screen. For example, if you are showing numbers from last quarter’s sales, you can mention how your team is obtaining new accounts for the next quarter, which reinforces your team’s value.
- Practice. Practice does make it perfect. Make sure your timing is correct, especially if you have a limited time to present. It would be
embarrassing to be told your time is up and you’re only half way done. If your presentation is part of a sales proposal or educational session, allow time for questions and answers. Practice out loud until you feel more comfortable with public speaking. If you require the internet for part of your presentation, ask for the username and password of the facility in advance and check that you have all the right cables and connectors. Nothing makes you sweat more than technical difficulties at a critical point.
Planning ahead will make your presentation rock. You will enjoy presenting and your audience will pick up on that positive vibe. Still not keen on creating your production? Let us help you so you can have your best presentation ever!