Five Pointers to Build a Powerful Presentation

Build a Powerful Presentation

The average attention span for adults has dropped down to 8 seconds. With an always available distractor, a mobile device, getting undisrupted client attention is a key challenge.

How do you hold attention of your audience when you are presenting something of outmost importance?
Below are 5 things that I have been successfully using in my presentations to ensure audience attention

1) The Second Slide –

After the cover slide on your presentation, this is a slide which will break the ice with the audience. This will draw them away from their mobile phones and a few laughter’s in the room will bring their attention back to what the speaker is saying.

This can be a joke or even a Dilbert comic strip but something that your audience can relate to.

2) It’s not about you, it’s about them –

During the multiple presentations that I have seen, most people tend to start with introducing their company, history, awards, clients and…… the list goes on.

I had to see almost 7 – 10 slides before they could even come down to what needs to be discussed. During this crucial period as you have bored the client enough and the client is just thinking about when this is going to get over.

I would recommend starting from the problem statement or setting up the context. This would encourage a conversation starter and you could hear challenges from your audience right there.

This would help in capturing points / challenges that you wouldn’t have thought through and gives you more opportunities to present solutions

3) Reduce the Clutter on Slide –

If you add everything on your slide what will you talk about, your audience will quickly glance through the slide and then interpret in the way they want it to and then stop listening.

It will take a lot of effort to get back their attention. Contrary to a slide which only has a few bullet points and then you get an opportunity to explain your point of view.

In case you are forced to use a lot of content, then you should use animation to slowly reveal content, rather than showing all in the first go. Also, you should graphics where possible but without overdoing it

4) Reinforce the Message with Stories –

When pitching about the service offerings, it is important to tell stories of how the service has been used for a client or paint a picture of how this service will be beneficial for the client and how you envision this can be used to resolve the challenges that they had laid down.

This will leave an impact and also ensure enough engagement as you are giving context to their challenges and how they can be resolved

5) The Last Step –

It is important to leave your audience in a comfortable zone. This is when you should state your organizations capabilities / case studies and why you are the most relevant person to solve their challenges and then you also discuss the next steps with a follow up action plan.

That would ensure that there are a few To Do’s you have has follow ups and an opportunity to start another conversation

These tactics should only be used when you are presenting yourself. If you need to send a presentation, then that should be self-explanatory.

The best presentation that I have seen till now only had a headline and a photograph beneath it and then the speaker took time to explain the headline and the context of the image.

At Markivis, we help organizations build stories using presentation. If you need someone to review your slides, please feel free to reach out to us at

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