Three Techniques to Keep Your Audience Engaged and Entertained
Modern life is full of distractions, it’s no wonder our attention spans are getting shorter and shorter. Presenters experience this first hand; most audiences struggle to stay focused during longer presentations. But there are a few tricks and techniques you can use to help them stay on track and avoid boredom.
Participation and interaction prevent your audience from tuning out. Read on to find out how you can make an audience of passive listeners feel like they’re part of your story. Variety and fun are the words of the day!
Technique 1: Gifts
Everyone likes swag. Who doesn’t enjoy free, practical items such as pens, USB sticks and vouchers? But gifts serve a dual purpose in a presentation. Sure, they make people happy. But most importantly, they can be used to promote your company. For instance, you can tie the gifts into your presentation to act as a catalyst for questions about you and your company in general.
Technique 2: Team Tasks
Awaken the competitive spirit in your audience: divide them into teams and distribute different tasks. Whether these tasks stay on-site or go off-site depends on the audience, the venue and your creativity. Just don’t forget to set a time limit!
Tasks like these are great team-building exercises and bring a lot of energy to a presentation. Nevertheless, they aren’t designed for every audience and topic, so take a moment to make sure they’re the right choice for your presentation.
Technique 3: Surveys
How about conducting a survey? Asking questions or introducing thought-provoking statements that your audience votes on adds variety to your presentation and refocuses your audience’s attention. “How many of you think that in X years …” or “How many of you have ever …” are typical hooks for surveys.
Although these techniques may at first seem a bit too complicated or even unconventional, they serve an important purpose: they keep the audience’s attention and create a more personal connection to the content. In short, your audience becomes part of the story you are telling.
Boredom and indifference, every presenter’s worst enemies, are best fought with variety and fun. With the techniques described here, your audience will become more engaged, interested and active, making your presentation one to remember!
Here are some other helpful articles on the topic of audience attention: