Some tremble with fear and dread when the word presentation gets mentioned. Others find their eyes lighting up and their enthusiasm levels rising. No matter what camp you find yourself in, we can all follow similar tips when preparing for a presentation.
Behind every great presentation is a great set of slides created with valuable software or presentation tool. But scouring the internet to find the perfect tool to meet your needs can take time as well as trial and error. So, we thought we would save you from the signing up and onboarding emails by gathering together a comprehensive list of presentation makers.
With the right preparation, anyone can deliver confident and effective presentations that leave a lasting impression on an audience. You certainly don’t need to be a public speaking expert to follow these tips either!
So without further ado, here are a few key points that will help you prepare for any kind of presentation.
Take some time to research your audience before you start designing your slides or preparing plans. Who are they? What are their interests? What do they expect from your presentation? Most importantly, what do they already know? Knowing your audience members will help you tailor your content to keep it relevant and interesting.
What do you want to achieve with your presentation? Do you want to educate your audience, persuade them, or entertain them? Defining your objective will help you focus your presentation and ensure that you deliver a clear and concise message.
Once you've defined your objective, it's time to structure your presentation. A well-structured presentation should have a clear introduction, a main body, and a conclusion. Use an outline to organize your ideas and ensure that your presentation flows logically.
When creating this structure, think about times when you can engage your audience with questions, when to gather their input, and when to put them in the driver’s seat.3. Prepare Your Slides
Slides can and will help you communicate your message more effectively. Using clear, simple slides that support your main points is a must. Avoid cluttered presentation slides with too much text or graphics, as they can be distracting and overwhelming.
Also, be sure to avoid a PowerPoint presentation with just white slides and black Arial font. Try and stay away from the word art too!
This is a tip we recommend for everyone but in particular for those new to presenting or who tend to get nervous before they step up to the mic. The more you practice, the more confident and polished you'll be.
Practice in front of a mirror, record yourself, or go through your presentation in front of a friend or family member. This will help you identify areas where you need to improve and refine your delivery. It may also help you come up with new and interesting points to include.
When delivering your presentation it can be easy to lose track of time as good ideas come to mind or you take a pause to highlight certain points. Make sure you know how much time you have for your presentation and plan accordingly. Time yourself during practice runs to ensure that you don't go overtime on the day of the presentation. A smart tip could be having someone give you time prompts throughout to make sure you are keeping to the plan.
Your audience will have questions and this is actually a good thing. While many may dread the idea of questions it actually underlines that people were paying attention and remained engaged. If you are prepared and know your topic you can probably anticipate what may be asked but don’t panic.
If you don’t know the answer just be prepared to say that you will get back to them and that you need to go and look it up.
When you talk to your audience remember that your body language can often be as effective and important as what you are saying. Act confident even if you don’t feel it. As part of your preparation experiment with moving around and speaking in a natural manner with hand movements and gestures.
Arrive early at the presentation venue so that you can set up your equipment and get familiar with the space if it’s not somewhere you usually work. This will help you feel more comfortable and prepared on the day of the presentation, especially if you need to set up a hybrid or fully remote meeting.
Finally, stay calm. Take a few deep breaths before you begin and remind yourself that you're prepared and all you need to do is exactly what you have prepared. Try to think positive thoughts rather than negative outcomes. Tell yourself that everyone is going to leave knowing more about this topic than when they arrived.
Do you really hate the idea of creating a presentation from scratch or do you just need some inspiration to clear that writer’s block preventing you from creating those slides?
Well, you are in luck as we here at Mentimeter have designed a series of presentation templates that you can download and use right away. By the way, they’re free too.
In our experience, it’s really important to make sure you start strong and get your audience into the right mindset. You can use an icebreaker to generate some laughs, find out more about your audience or set the tone for your presentation.
Here we have full presentations on team meetings, sales pitches, marketing updates and more. All you need to do is jump in and put your stamp on them.
The best presentations engage an audience, convey a clear and obvious message, and leave a lasting impression. In other words, people should leave the meeting feeling that it was worthwhile.
To achieve this, a presentation should be well-structured with a clear introduction, a main body, and a conclusion. Visual aids like slides should complement the main points, not distract from the message.
The very best will be tailored to the audience, taking into consideration their interests and expertise. This will help to make any presentation informative and pertinent.