In this age of technology, research says our attention spans are dwindling. If you are a speaker, you have probably noticed at least one or two people in the audience who are distracted by their smartphones. What is a speaker to do?
Whether speaking to a large audience, small group, or in one-on-one conversations, it is necessary to maximize your message for the time you have that person’s attention. You must have a point, make a point, and get to the point.
If your presentation includes selling a product, keep in mind that a potential customer decides within approximately 15-30 seconds whether they want to “buy” from you or say “goodbye” to you. Therefore, your message must be on point.
I think we all can agree that it is rather uncomfortable listening to long-winded speakers. Most times we want to help move them along, but we can’t. Some people walk out, others fall asleep, or get distracted by their technological devices. If this long-winded speaker is you, here are a few tips to help move you in the right direction.
Show the audience you are the expert without telling them you are the expert.
Avoid long boring introductions about your accomplishments. This could make you sound like you are bragging.
Mention 2-3 short items of interest about you in the introduction. Relate those items to a point in your presentation.
Demonstrate your expertise by delivering exceptional content which relates to current day situations.
Facts are actual, but stories are impactful
Facts and stats are good qualifiers to validate your message.
Apply those facts/stats to a benefit for your audience.
Add the facts to a short story to help draw your audience in.
Most people remember or relate to acts more than facts. Explain the action items in your short story.
Make your message a V.I.P.
Your message should offer Value. Show its importance or usefulness to the audience.
Your message should make an Impression. It should be thought-provoking and memorable.
Your message should be Personal. Connect with your audience on a common issue and offer a solution.
Motivational speaker, Delatorro McNeal says, “Everyone in your audience is on the same station, WIIFM. What’s in it for me?” Put yourself in the place of your audience. Why should they listen to your presentation? What will they gain from your message? How can they apply what they have learned? When you answer these questions, you will be in a better position to maximize your message using minimal time.
Veronica Blakely is a Communication Skills Trainer and can be contacted for more information through her website: www.VeronicaBlakely.Biz