A good presentation is more than just a speech.
Steve Jobs was arguably one of the best presenters who ever graced the stage. His presentations were highly inspiring and every one of his speeches received a standing ovation from his audience.
The secret behind his success was a series of steps he routinely followed. Here are those 10 steps that have also helped my performance in my presentations.
Tip One: Storyboard With Pen And Paper
We are so used to using a computer now that many of us forget about using pen and paper unless absolutely necessary.
However, this can be very useful when designing slides and determining what you want to talk about for each point. It helps to organise your thoughts and aids you in sharpening your content as well as the overall the presentation.
When I design my keynotes, I draw everything out on paper so I could move my ideas around to make sure my content flowed nicely.
Tip Two: Create A Single Sentence Description For Every Service/Idea
Having a long winded description in a presentation can be confusing for your audience. Instead, you want to condense descriptions so they are shorter than a 140-character tweet.
This is easier to understand and looks more aesthetic on a screen. 90% of my slides are usually just 1-3 words because I want the focus to be on me.
Tip Three: Create A Villain
Audiences react to something that opposes them and will often want to lean towards a hero.
Make your services/brand a hero and create an arch nemesis your brand can defeat. It’s a classic strategy for film and storytelling. Businesses are also storytellers when it comes to branding. Create a story for your brand with a clear villain for people to rally against.
It doesn’t need to be a competitor. It could be another consumer. It could be the old way of doing things. There are many potential villains.
Tip Four: Focus On Benefits
Your audience cares little about attributes or what makes a product great. They do care about how the services will benefit them. Make sure you are focusing on what is important to them and not you.
In all of my presentations, I always put “about the company” near the end, and their benefits in the first few slides.
Tip Five: Stick To The Rule Of Three
Three is a magic number. It is large enough to give credibility to what you are saying but small enough that your audience can remember the points. If you go much above three points, your audience won’t remember anything you’ve said.
Tip Six: Sell The “Why”
People don’t buy services; they buy the “why”, which means they buy better lives in some way for themselves and for those they care about. Therefore, forget your services and sell the “why” from the perspective of the consumer.
Tip Seven: Visuals Are More Important
Steve Jobs never used bullet points. They are too standard and add very little to your presentation. Instead focus on using images and graphics to sell the concepts you want to speak to your audience about.
It’s proven that people remember imagery better than they do words. In my presentations, almost every slide is an image. Most of the time, it is just an image without words.
Tip Eight: Meaningful Number
Whenever you mention a statistic, make it meaningful to the audience.
The larger the number the more important it is to place that number into context. Keep the number on the screen, but talk about it. Remember, the focus is on you.
Tip Nine: Don’t Use Jargon
Not all of your audience is going to know exactly what your industrial jargon means. If you use this jargon, then the majority might tune out because they don’t understand. Instead, use plain English to ensure everyone understands you.
The best way to find out is to do a dry run of your presentation with people who are not in your industry. Invite them over, treat them to food and ask them for candid feedback on whether they understood your message and if it resonated with them.
Tip Ten: Practice, A Lot
Steve Jobs spent hours practicing his presentations until they were perfect in every aspect. This made his presentations look effortless, but it came at a cost of hours of work. Those who do put in lots of practice will find their presentations succeeding a lot better. Like my last article (Relentless Preparations), practice at least 20 times out loud. Walk like you were on stage. The more you practice your part seriously, the more comfortable you will be.
Using the tips above, you will be able to create and deliver powerful presentations. And if you need help, I know many amazing coaches.