Over the last few years, I have attended a few conferences and seminars and the people I remember the most are those who are passionate about the topic and those who provide some insights and knowledge. The people I forget or remember for the wrong reasons are those people who see this as a promotion opportunity and present their work in a general sales pitch.
When presenting at a conference we are often presenting to our peers, so its not really a great audience to be giving a sales pitch, they are more interested in you, your process and the knowledge you can share rather than promotion.
Here are some tips for making an interesting presentation
- Make it about the audience
If you were in the audience what would want to know about you? what would make you think – hey this person really knows their stuff?
- What is your key message?
All too often we make the mistake of trying to cover too many points in a limited time span. Most people will only remember 3-4 key points, there it is better to centre those points around one key message
- Tailor the presentation to the time allowed
You have to remember to tailor the presentation to the time and try not to overrun.
– 10 minutes then make 1-2 good points and take it slow. I have made the mistake in the past of adding too many points as I feel the need to cover more information but it is better to make it memorable for people with one key point.
– 30- 45 minutes then 3-4 points that are well thought out and structured. If — – More then 45 minutes then make it 3-4 points and the rest Q&A.
- Tailor the message to the audience
When you start thinking of ideas and complete your first draft it is best to try and think about how to tailor the message to the audience and remember that not everyone in the audience may know about your industry or work, it is best to go through and remove acronyms and jargon. I have sat through 10 minutes of presentation until I realised what the acronym stood for.
- Go broader than your own work
As stated previously, we are not interested in a sales pitch, so sometime it may require you to include work from other companies. Of course, you will credit them and seek permission first. Some of the best presentations I have seen provide a broad range of projects that present the best examples of an idea or theory.
Remember, the presentation is about your audience and not you, it is best to provide knowledge that is most valuable to them and avoid seeing as a great to promote you or your company.