You Need To Be Relentless To Make Your Digital Presentation Interesting

The stillness of chaos

If you don’t keep you virtual presentation engaging, it will be forgotten!

The greatest challenge for those presenting content virtually, is keeping their presentation more interesting than the distractions.

Virtual Presentations And Distractions Abound

The amount of free or low cost Webinars and electronic presentations is multiplying daily. Our in-boxes are flooded with invitations to online learning communities and forums, virtual meetings and Webinars. Digital presentations and eLearning opportunities continue to grow.

Maintaining the attention of a face to face audience is difficult. Maintaining the attention of remote audience is difficult squared.

To keep a remote audience’s attention, you have to be more interesting than any distraction that may come their way. You have to be relentless in your efforts to get them involved early and keep them engaged.

Why? Multitaskers distract easy. They are suckers for irrelevancy. For them, distractions abound.

Keep It Relevant

It’s critical that you keep your presentation content relevant to the attendees. If the content is not interesting to the audience, it will be ignored.

Keeping the content meaningful is the first and last chance you have to gaining participants’ trust and attention. When selecting the topic, identifying the purpose, pinpointing the objectives and delivering the message, you must stay focused on keeping every piece of information meaningful. The content must be applicable to your audience. If it’s not relevant, don’t include it.

If everything your listeners hear is relevant, they will pay attention. When they pay attention, you are nurturing their ability to retain it.

Make It Difficult To Look Away

Think about what glues you to a TV set. When do you give your family the “talk-to-the-hand pose” because what’s on TV is more important than their interruption?

When something on TV is truly engaging, you don’t want to look away. When it has you on the edge of your seat, the producers have done their job. They’ve detained your focus.

If attendees are totally engrossed in your digital presentation, the distractions will not sidetrack them. Distractions only distract when interest starts to wane.

Make A Digital Agreement

At the beginning of your presentation, tell your audience that you plan to be brief and will give them something of relevance. In exchange, ask them for their undivided attention.

Help them understand that in exchange for their attention, you’ll give them two or three practices that will help them. Tell them that if the presentation doesn’t meet their needs, that they have the right to use the “Law of the Click” and click to something more appealing. Then ask them to send their initials through the chat feature if they agree with the deal.

Hey Look It’s A Squirrel

Once you have the attention of your audience, do everything you can to maintain it or to keep wooing them back into the presentation. Attention spans are about 10-minutes. Using intriguing visuals, few written words, humor, storytelling and encourage texting through the chat feature to keep your audience engaged.

Thinking that you can maintain the audience for the entire 30- or 60-minutes is delusional. Instead, find ways to reengage them if you think you’ve lost them.

Ultimately, it takes planning and resourcefulness on your part to keep your audience’s attention. Committing 100% to that goal is the first step.

What holds your attention during a Webinar? What are some things presenters do that totally turns you off during a digital presentation?

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  1. One thing I do whenever possible (as a speaker) is use the live polling feature during Webinars to hyper-target relevance. For instance, Webinars typically offer answers to a half dozen or so answers that attendees have. But at show time a different mix of people may show up. By offering those who actually attend a chance to “focus me in” on what matters to them most I’m often able to offer real-time hyper-relevance. Of course this requires being a nimble speaker. But the task can also be accomplished via a helpful moderator.

  2. Karen says:

    When I attend a webinar it is because I feel it will be worth 1 hour of my time. When the presenter spends the first 20 minutes outlining his or her bio and accomplishments, I leave. A webinar should be about the content, not about the presenter.

  3. […] such as session polling and verbally addressing the online audience shouldn’t be assumed. This blog post from Velvet Chainsaw provides good insight for online session […]

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