A fatal mistake you can make as an entrepreneur or executive when presenting to an audience is forgetting that a presentation is NOT ABOUT YOU!
Who is it about then? It is about the people sitting or standing in front of you - YOUR AUDIENCE. Without an engaged audience, you and your business, or idea, are nothing.
Before you tell your story, before you do your slides and before you go on stage, you need to know three things:
What is your audiences major pain, or even better, what keeps them awake at night? This will depend on the type of audience. Are you presenting to customers, partners or potential investors?
These groups are not the same audience. They have different pain points. You need to consider what the biggest problem is for each group. For investors, they want to invest in "the next big thing" and make more money.
Now you need to consider what your audiences main goal is? What do they really want? To answer this you need to consider what their biggest dream is. People respond to emotions. Don't sell products and services, sell dreams!
How can you help solve your audiences main problem? Diagnose their problem then suggest how you can make their life better. Making their life better is a much more compelling USP than selling another everyday product or service.
Once you know what your audience wants decide on three things you will give them. Write your story based on those three things, design your slide deck, deliver on stage and successfully connect with your audience!
Doing this exercise will improve the level of engagement with your audience tenfold.
In order to successfully connect with your audience you need to know three things about your audience:
For a visual representation of these 3 principles see the following slide deck from Tomas Bay, founder of a design company called Slides That Rock based in Hong Kong.