Delivering a successful presentation isn’t always easy. As we’ve already established, success requires a lot of planning and preparation. There’s no shortcut to achieving success. That said, start considering the essential steps to perfecting your output.
Cross off these things from your to-do list and you’re sure to get where you want to be:
Establish a concrete goal
You can’t reach your destination unless you know which way to go. That’s why it’s important to establish and map out your goals—whether it be to seal a deal with prospects or gain new investors for your venture. Consider these your overall destination.
To get there, you need to think about a few other markers.
Set aside some time to think about what you want your presentation to be like. Aside from your overall goal, think about the message you want to share.
Ask yourself what you want your listeners to remember about your presentation. What message will help you achieve more?
Connect with your audience
The next step to presentation success is making sure your message suits the audience. After all, connecting with them is a vital ingredient of your presentation. Otherwise, you’ll end up boring people.
If you want to avoid such a scenario, research the people you’ll be presenting to. What kind of group are they? What is the presentation for and why should it be valuable to them?
How do you make sure the points you’ll present add to their knowledge? How can you tell a story that will push them towards positive action? Consider these 4 questions to create a reliable audience profile to help build your presentation.
Use your time wisely
Time is another factor to consider when it comes to achieving presentation success. You won’t have all day to make your point, so you need to be able to create a presentation that makes the most of the time you’re given. Whether you only have 30 minutes or more than an hour, start off your presentation strong.
The first few minutes is extremely crucial. Your performance during this time will help determine if your audience will maintain their attention until the very end.
The introduction will set the tone of your entire presentation. Make sure you use this time to make a noticeable impression. After that, you still need to sustain the energy you initially established.
Presentation expert Carmine Gallo had suggested incorporating “soft breaks” after every 10 minutes. Spend 10 minutes making your point, and then give your audience a chance to catch up by re-engaging them using these techniques.
Make sure your slides stand out
Your PowerPoint slides can play a huge role in presentation success. Even the best message needs the help of visuals to engage a commonly disengaged audience.
We’ve given plenty of design advice over the years, but here are a few more that might help you on your road to presentation success:
- Don’t be too conscious of the number of slides you’re using because this will depend on the content of your presentation. A more helpful method would be to draft out all the points you want to make and condense them to slides through a storyboard.
- All your design choices will contribute to pushing your message forward. Make sure the color scheme, fonts, and graphics you use help set up a theme that doesn’t distract from what you’re trying to say.
- Simple slides aren’t necessarily boring. In presentations, “less is more” is actually a valuable motto. A lot of presentations are weighed down by over-the-top graphics and animation. For your presentation, be mindful of using white space and other design elements.
Achieving presentation success doesn’t have to be difficult. All you need is time to plan what you want to say and prepare accordingly.
Think about the message you want to deliver and make sure everything you do helps you push that message forward to the audience. If you need any help, don’t hesitate to contact our presentation design experts. We can create PowerPoint slides that will help ensure your perfect outcome.
“Audience Participation: 4 Crucial Questions to Answer.” SlideGenius, Inc. August 28, 2014. Accessed February 16, 2015.
“Choosing the Right Colors for Your PowerPoint Design.” SlideGenius, Inc. June 3, 2014. Accessed February 16, 2015.
Gallo, Carmine. “Why PowerPoint Presentations Always Die After 10 Minutes And How To Rescue Them.” Forbes. April 30, 2014. Accessed February 16, 2015.
“How to Organize Your Ideas with a Presentation Storyboard.” SlideGenius, Inc.. September 1, 2014. Accessed January 8, 2015.
“Introductions: 5 Creative Ways to Start Your Presentation.” SlideGenius, Inc. November 30, 2014. Accessed February 16, 2015.
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