Four tips to become a powerful, personable and persuasive presenter

Presenting in 2023 requires an increasing reliance on digital tools and technology and the ability to pivot between in-person and online engagement.  

With proper planning and polished public speaking skills, you can eliminate potential mishaps and present powerfully, personably, and persuasively in any setting. 

Lights, camera, action 

It’s true that if you fail to plan, you plan to fail. Use your pre-presentation time effectively to expertly set-up your space.  

This means positioning your laptop in a place that showcases you (not your office ceiling, although that is better than a cluttered bedroom or bookshelf), with ample light behind your screen.  

Further, test your microphone to ensure your audience will find you audible. 

Master the initial minutes 

The first moments of a hybrid presentation set the audience’s expectations of what is to follow.  

Avoid a clunky, delayed start by encouraging remote participants to join early, providing you the chance to properly greet them and iron out any technological kinks.  

Manage audience attention 

Any audience member will lose focus if they struggle to hear or see, are presented with numerous technical challenges and distractions, or feel left out.  

For virtual participants, this risk is heightened. Recent Stanford University research described the “fatigue” virtual meeting members can feel with video conferences exhausting to the human mind and body.  

That’s why it’s often recommended that hybrid events are kept brief where possible.  

Other means of overcoming ebbs in audience attention include: 

  • Repeating questions and answers for the benefit of your virtual audience.
  • Rotating questions between live and remote audience members to avoid the former group dominating discussions.
  • Encouraging both live and remote audience members to engage by using a “raise hand” approach.
  • Maintaining eye contact with the camera and the faces in the room. 

Read the room and zoom 

Arguably the most difficult demand of a hybrid presentation is the need to simultaneously split your attention between an audience in two different physical settings (online and in-person).  

 As a presenter, you must monitor, connect, and engage with two disparate groups with different needs.  

Conquering this challenge comes mostly with practice. We recommend using a facilitator’s guide to keep conversation on track, but also reading the room and redirecting your focus as the need arises to maintain an engaged audience.  

Connect with us 

We are experts in corporate communication, media training, stakeholder engagement and workshop facilitation. Connect with us today to learn how we can assist you develop a well-structured, clear, and engaging presentation.