10 Tips to Enhance Virtual Presentations

10 Tips to Enhance Virtual Presentations

By: Matt Swenson
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There is already so much information online, compounded by the seven-plus months we've relied on Zoom, e-mail and chat apps to communicate. Additionally, it's estimated that the average professional receives 147 emails per day in their inbox alone.

How do you break through all the noise when presenting a virtual component at a conference? As a speaker and master class coach, Mindset Digital founder and CEO Debra Jasper, PhD does it for a living. Consider her pieces of advice to make a big impact on the small screen.

1. Clean out the clutter: The number one mistake presenters make, Jasper says, is putting too much information on a slide, making it difficult to read.

2. "Say dog, see dog." This piece of advice harkens back to Jasper's journalism days. Newscasters are taught that if they mention a dog, or any subject for that matter, there should be a visual for the dog. Doing so keeps the eye and brain engaged.

3. Keep the event moving. Related to the dog example, speakers should make film director and producer Michael Bay proud with all of their cuts. Jasper uses between 200 and 230 slides in a 45-minute presentation.

4. Break it down. Not to be confused with "dumb it down," Jasper says speakers need to master of the art of explaining complex topics succinctly and clearly. It sounds easy until you have to do it yourself.

5. Watch your language. No, we're not talking about cursing here. Speakers have to sound real and not jargony. You'll be tuned out if you're speaking only in industry terms.

6. Foreshadow. Give the audience a taste of what's to come, which in turn, gives them a reason to stay to the endwhich is the top objective.

7. Never let a speaker end on a question. The risk is the sessions end on a lull of silence, zapping energy out of the event.

8. Always have a backup. Log onto your webinar or session on a second computer just in case something goes wrong. Once, Jasper's sound cut off, but she was back up and running in 30 seconds.

9. Lose the green screen. The idea of virtual backgrounds is cool, but that disappearing ear is more than a little distracting. Technology is going to catch up to these bugs, but for now, keep it real.

10. Invest in Wi-Fi. You can't control the bandwidth at a hotel or at attendees' homes, but you can take care of your equipment. Do what you can to come in crisp and clean.

 

credit iStock.com/Blue Planet Studio