Most top presenters have worked hard to be brilliant at specific, relatively simple skills.
The performance element of presenting (as opposed to slides) is a skill, whether your presentation is live or online. So here’s a few tips to help you up your game:
1. If you want your presentme video to be the best it can be, the number one rule is to practice it beforehand. Otherwise you’re just giving your audience your first rehearsal!
2. If you don’t appear to care, then why should your audience?! And we need to see it on the outside – voice and face. Act enthusiastic and you are enthusiastic.
3. Physical and vocal energy when presenting to a webcam can be tough, as you’ve got no-one to bounce off. The best way to check energy is do it and then review it. Can you honestly say, when you review it, that you really sound and look like it matters to you?!
4. It may feel unnatural, but use more energy than you think you need. Bizarrely it will probably look natural. It’s about your audience’s comfort not yours.
5. Watch out for “verbal pollution” – the ‘ums’, ‘ers’, ‘you knows’, and ‘kind ofs’. A lot of us do it far more than we realise, and it makes you sound less clear and sure of what you’re saying.
6. Don’t rush. Speakers who hold attention understand the power of silence. So don’t feel the need to fill it, give your content, and their brains, a break! Take your time.
7. Visual memory is very powerful, for you as well as your audience. Try to create and remember your presentation as a series of pictures or scenes, it will help you tell a clearer story.
8. If you try to tell me everything, you’ll probably end up telling me nothing. Keep it short, and make sure that you can answer the question “if they forget everything else, what’s the one thing they won’t forget?”
9. Our attention spans are getting shorter and shorter. So, you’ve guessed it; keep it short. Whoever said, “I didn’t have time to write you a shorter letter” knew his/her stuff.
10. The last tip is simple: if you forget everything else, don’t forget to smile! We enjoy watching and listening to people who appear to be enjoying what they are talking about.
That’s it. Of course there’s lots more, but that’ll do for starters. Good luck and knock their socks off.