The presentation tone differs from the type of presentation. The presentations are different but the ingredients are the same and need to be mixed in different proportions to make the presentations succeed.
We love TED curator`s — Chris Anderson`s — citation:
A successful talk is a little miracle — people see the world differently afterward.
Chris shares his steps in presentation preparation — how to create this miracle, and we want to share with you and enrich it with our experience in presentation preparation.
This post I am writing on behalf of my Speak2Me team. More you can find here.
1. Frame your story
You need to have something worth talking about. Sometimes you might feel that you “need” to give this presentation, but you are not sure you have something meaningful to say. Our general recommendation is to have a step back, analyze what you can tell your audience new and enrich their knowledge about the topic, and only then to give the presentation.
After you found meaningful things to say — focus. Lots of bad presentations are bad because they are “about everything talks.”
The best speeches are like a detective story — they are interesting to follow. There is also an “aha” moment that both thrills and engages your listener.
Why lots of talks fail, according to Duarte?
Because of the speaker:
- did not frame the talk correctly
- did not understand the level of audiences interest or
- did not tell a story
2. Plan your delivery
A general recommendation is don’t read your talk. It distracts you from resonating with your audience.
Also, pay attention to your tone — either it is powerful or more conversational. Be yourself here.
Don’t talk about yourself. The audience is interested in themselves.
3. Develop stage presence
We genuinely believe that what you are talking about — the messages and the story — is more important than how you behave on stage or if you are nervous. However, it does not mean you should pay no attention to the stage presence, especially if you are a new speaker.
Some advice here:
- don’t walk on stage all the time — this is a sign of a worrying person. If you feel that you are walking too much — then it is better to stand at a single place
- make eye contact — to keep your audience engaged and also to get the instant feedback on the speech
- if you are nervous — learn power poses — stay tall, stride around, and extend your body.
4. Plan the multimedia
- could you keep it simple?
- don’t use a slide deck as a substitute for notes
- don’t repeat out loud words that are on the slide (your audience can read)
Many TEDx speakers don’t use slides at all. If you have some visuals to support the words — then do so. You can use engaging Press programs — but from our experience, you need to learn how to do it right as it might be overwhelming for the audience.
How to use video?
- it should be short (usually no more than 60 second — you risk losing people)
- don’t use self-promotional videos or infomercials (we once tried that, and it was a disaster — the audience will be defensive against these videos)
- if there is a soundtrack — be prepared for the worse — the audio can not work, and you will be in the case where you will be the anchor for the video
5. Put everything together. And rehearse.
And remember, from Chris — if you have something to say, you can build a great talk. But if the central theme isn’t there, you’re better off not speaking. Decline the invitation.