Ana G. Méndez University System School for Professional Studies Florida Campuses Turabo University Strategies to grab the audience’s attention Presented By: Engl 331 Milton Velez Prof. Kelly Pérez Nancy Morales Jonathan Sosa
IntroductionO One of the most important challenges for a presenter is first grabbing and then keeping the attention of an audience. If the presenter is unable to do this, the presentation might not succeed, no matter how valuable the content might be. When a presenter is waiting for his turn and slyly looks over the crowd before having to step in, panic tends to overwhelm. This is a familiar feeling for many. Here are some of the most commonly used methods for successfully getting and keeping audience attention.
Asking a question.???O You can ask a rhetorical question or something that involves everyone by getting him or her to think about the topic. O •How many of you in this room have hated filling up tax returns? O •How many of you drive a German car? O •Are our competitors driving us out of the market?
State an impressive fact.O Begin with a shocking, unusual or impressive fact connected to the theme of your presentation. O •We are going to be out of business in six months if we allow our competitors to outrun us like this. O •The demand in the market has doubled in the last three years and our market share has risen by only 1%.
Tell a story.O Telling a personal story closely connected to the theme of your presentation is a great way to begin. People usually like to hear personal stories, which are not too long or try to glorify the narrator too much. Example: O "Dear colleagues, before I begin I would like to tell you a short story about how our service got its name. Dont worry, its not too long".
Cite a quotation.O Quotations are much used for presentations and they add a colorful touch to your personal style. O “A short saying often contains much wisdom” Sophocles (496 BC - 406 BC) O "No culture can live, if it attempts to be exclusive." Mahatma Gandhi
Narrate a joke.O Jokes are wonderful for relaxing the audience and setting a cheerful mood. Relaxed audiences tend to be more interactive. This might make the presenters work somewhat easier.O The joke must be appropriate. People have very different senses of humor and you have to be very careful with jokes. What might produce rolls of laughter from one audience might cause stunned silence in another.
Go among the audience.O Presenters usually keep to the area in front, near the laptop or the transparency projector. This creates a comfort zone for many people in the audience. Some courageous presenters disturb this comfort zone of the audience by walking closer or going absolutely to one side. Then the primitive instincts of the people in their comfort zone start waking them up. "The presenter is so close and next hell even ask me something, so I better be alert".
In ConclusionO Attention-grabbing skills are important for establishing relevance to your audience. Most of the people in the audience are often not mentally present or with you when you begin to speak. Even if they are physically present there and are trying to look interested, in reality, they are in their own worlds. They are thinking about work matters, planning the rest of their day, thinking about a problem of their own or just daydreaming. You have to bring them into your world and get them interested in your subject.