15 Ways to Make Your Presentation More Interactive

March 14, 2023/10 mins min read
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Keeping your audience's attention for long periods can be one of the biggest challenges whilst speaking in front of a crowd. No doubt many of you have seen plenty of people scrolling through their phones, daydreaming, or even having a chat with their neighbors. Let’s face it, we have all sat in mundane meetings and felt a wave of boredom and lethargy sweep over us. Some of us may even have drifted off after the fourth identically dull slide appears on screen… yawn!

As a presenter, staring out at a sea of mind-numbingly boring faces will only make you more nervous, talk faster and try and get the presentation over with asap. Certainly not the best way to get an effective and meaningful message across.

Engaging the crowd, no matter if it is big or small, is the best way to keep them focused, interested, and attentive to what it is you're saying. So to help you, we have compiled a definitive list of ways to make your presentation interactive. 

What is an interactive presentation?

An interactive presentation is one in which the audience, no matter the size, has the chance to take part and voice their opinions by responding to questions, posing their own, or interacting with the presenter.  

When we think of presentations we often think of a slightly dull PowerPoint presentation accompanied by a long monologue from a presenter. Interactive presentations flip this and create a dialogue between the presenter and the audience that has a more back-and-forth feel. 

How to make a presentation interactive

  1. Use an icebreaker
  2. Keep it simple
  3. Ask the audience
  4. Try out a quiz
  5. Use humor
  6. Make eye contact
  7. Don’t forget body language
  8. Make use of effective language
  9. Add in some visual and audio effects
  10. Benefit from a video
  11. Let the audience answer anonymously
  12. Get your audience moving
  13. Turn control over to the audience
  14. Make things personal
  15. Share the presenter spotlight

1. Break the Ice

Based on our 2023 State of Meetings report, almost half of participants agree that a meeting is likely to fail if people aren’t engaged from the start. That’s why icebreakers are the perfect starting point to turn your audience from listeners to active participants from the get-go. Icebreakers can also help you relax before you get into the main body of the presentation and deliver your most important points. 

Now the beauty of icebreakers is that there is one for every occasion. There are fun icebreakers, silly icebreakers, as well as thought-provoking icebreakers. 

Deepest Fear

Deepest Fear


2. Use a straightforward presentation

Plan out your presentation and slide deck to be clean, simple to follow, and not too complex. Keep in all essential details and allow the audience to ask about specifics during a Q&A session. 

Remember you don’t have to say absolutely everything, just what is needed. Otherwise, it could end up being distracting and overwhelming for the audience, and they may switch off and ignore what you’re saying.

3. Ask the audience questions

Yes, ask them questions, but don’t pick out particular audience members. You allow them to interact, making them feel part of the presentation. This encourages people to take part and join in. 

This is also valuable for the presenter as you can gain helpful insights and data about the audience, their experience of the presentation, and any takeaways from it such as ways to improve.

Poll Questions

If you want to get your audience thinking and debating, then a poll question can spark some lively back and forth. Talk through answers to see what the consensus is or where we differ on opinions.

Word Clouds

Word Clouds are a great way to get short succinct answers to any type of question that you can visualize in real-time. Word Clouds are a useful way to introduce some brevity to a presentation or to ask something pertinent that requires some thought and reflection.  

4. Quiz

A quiz competition is probably the most fun interactive experience you can have with your audience. The quiz can be used both for educational purposes such as a test, and also just to have a game of trivia. Testing your audience’s knowledge in this way will mean they are more relaxed and also reinforce what they have just heard and learned.

5. Use humor

Showing your personality and sense of humor can lighten the mood and build a good rapport with the crowd. The audience is more likely to remember you if you make them laugh and in turn remember your ideas and key points.

6. Eye contact

The power of good eye contact can never be underestimated. It gives you a strong stage presence and can help to effectively deliver your point. Bear in mind that you should try to connect with each section of the audience. 

You don’t want to just stare at one person making it feel awkward and you look nervous. Establishing and maintaining eye contact gives it a much more personal and intimate feel as if you are talking directly to that person.

7. Body language

Your gestures and body posture are particularly significant to the air you give off and the influence you have. Making sure you are visible and not hiding behind a stand is obvious but many great presenters are sure to avoid this. 

You need to create a connection with them and standing strong will make you seem more confident and in control, automatically engaging the audience. Gestures that reach out to the audience and techniques such as moving around on stage command the audience’s attention.

8. Effective language

Using inspiring language and adjusting your tone of voice to your advantage can affect how you impact and influence the audience. The language you use also needs to match the tone and style of the presentation. So whether it is formal or informal, what the demographic of your audience is, it is important to make sure you don’t use too technical or not technical enough terms.

9. Add visuals and audio effects

Simply put, they help to make your talk not so boring. Using music or sound effects will naturally perk the audience up. Music is a great way to bond with the audience as it evokes emotion and can help them to recall presentation ideas.

Images, videos, and even GIFs can add a visual element that will help draw attention back to your slides and give people something else to focus on.

10. Use videos

Videos halfway through a presentation are an awesome tactic to refocus the audience. If you see your audience starting to get restless or fidgety, a video can instantly revive them and get them interested again. 

Videos can be a great way to start up a discussion, and reinforce your message, and more often than not, people are more moved and affected when they see a video. Sometimes a video can say much more than words ever could.

11. Allow the audience to ask anonymous questions

Allowing the audience to ask questions whenever they may have one, enables them to have their say and feel as if their opinion is valued. Traditionally, people would not want to raise their hands in front of many people and give their opinion or ask a question. 

12. Raise your hand questions

It may seem strange but using traditional methods, instead of digital platforms to revive a bored crowd is easy and effective. Using too many digital question tools could be a bit too excessive, so a simple show of hands is an alternative to get everyone involved.

13. Give the audience more control

Giving the audience control by putting the presentation slides in their hands and enabling them to go back to previous slides will be advantageous for them to understand better. Presentation slides are the perfect tool to effectively communicate your message. 

This also allows them to participate while you speak and ‘like’ the slide or send a ‘heart’ for example, which is great for you to know which slides the audience likes best. This works great during an online presentation as it can help bridge that online gap.

14. Make it personal

Telling stories and letting your personality shine through, can make you more relatable to the audience. Storytelling and sharing your personal experiences is the best way to capture and maintain the audience’s attention whilst keeping them entertained. People want to hear what happens next and it will make your presentation more memorable.

15. Share the presenting role

Inviting people and guest speakers on stage is a great way to change the topic, get a new perspective and switch up the presenting style helping to re-engage your audience. Note: plan, you don’t want to spring this on someone last minute or mid-way through the presentation!

Interactive presentation tools

There are plenty of presentation tools to choose from and many of these will add interactive elements like word clouds, surveys, and Q&As. While many of the traditional presentation makers like PowerPoint, Google Slides, and Keynote, are useful, they won’t help create that connection between you and the group. 

Dedicated interactive presentation software is the best way to create this more interactive and collaborative experience. Mentimeter is one of the most powerful tools available. To learn more about Mentimeter and what you can create, just click below!

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