Whether you love speaking to a crowd or you tremble at the thought of it, every entrepreneur will have to make a presentation eventually, so you may as well ensure that yours is strong.
Presentations offer you a great way to get your point across and make an impression. Excellent presentations can be so memorable that listeners share them over and over again to solidify the material. For any entrepreneur, presentation skills can make or break a business, and for any presentation to make an impact, a few key points need to be kept in mind.
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Keep these tips at the top of your radar screen to ensure your presentations shine.
Keep it Simple
: Many business school graduates are known for relying on heavy data-equipped text presentations. Unfortunately, not all viewers enjoy seeing text-intense presentations, because these are typically forgettable. The idea behind any great presentation should be to make it as simple as possible so everyone understands and digests it easily. The simpler the explanation, the better the retention.
Make it Pictorial:
Text-based presentations can be boring, and may soon find their way to the recycle bin. Break up the monotony and explain your message with pictures. Graphically represent what you want to say, because a picture says a thousand words. It is ingrained in human psychology to remember data if it has a pictorial representation.
Include Bulletproof Information
: If you are sharing information in your presentation, make sure that it is data-driven and bulletproof. It should be validated from every known source, and should be authenticated in such a manner that nobody questions the veracity of your presentation. When you present it to people, they should be treating it as gospel.
Include a Story:
Make presentations that include an anecdote/story. This will have an emotional impact on your audience, and emotions always trump logic. Appeal to the emotional side of your audience, and make them feel your presentation. Motivate them into action.
Ensure You Hit These Presentation Strategies
These are simple tactics that make a great presentation for your prospective business growth. However, how do you give the above presentation and in turn make it the best presentation ever?
One thing that can sink a presentation is when the presenter reads directly from cue cards. The presentation should be in your head and you should explain it rather than read it. The material that you’re presenting should be just a reference point for you. You should talk about your business, what you want, how you want it handled, and only use the visuals to prove your point.
A flat voice with no modulation makes for a very boring presentation. You might be showing people how to make gold from air, but with a flat drone you would just lull them to sleep or lose their attention in few minutes. Make your voice your friend. Play with it, let it go up down. Pause, increase and decrease your tempo. Stress important points and pause on strategic areas. This will not only hold your audience’s attention, but also get them interested in what you are discussing. Practice until you become perfect.
Practice, and then practice some more. If you have mastered your presentation, then practice in front of the mirror, in front of your peers, and in front of your family. Practice until you remember every point, nuance and voice modulation that is required. Don’t just review your slides, own them. This can only be done via practice.
Every great presentation has had a ‘buzz’ surrounding it. But how does this buzz come to be? It has to be created by you – the presenter. Have something related to your presentation in the form of an action that requires participation or that takes the audience away from the screen and transfers their attention elsewhere. This alternate place could be anything as long as it is related to your presentation and as long as you can control it, and it gets your audience’s attention back to where you want it to be. These 'buzz' moments can provide the audience with relief from the monotony.
In the end, it's all about excellent communication skills. From the elusive contract to the job you have always dreamed about, it’s communication and the tips given above that make a great presentation and presenter.