Moving people is the fine art of presenting. Whether you are speaking in front of a customer or your employees, the goal is always to persuade others through the power of your speech and thus move them to take a certain action.
The simplest means: the command form – you must!
The easiest way to get people moving is to engage them – for example, by exercising your power as a supervisor.[/vc_column_text][vc_column_text]
But command or even coercion always have only a short-term effect. According to the motto “service by the book” is done what is required – but no more! No extra effort, no ambition and certainly no initiative. Only when employees are truly convinced of their task can they deliver the best possible results and are also willing to go the extra mile.
In September 2014, I observed a presentation at the “Swiss Office Management” trade fair in Zurich. The speaker introduced a new type of labeling system that was touted as revolutionary. But only five listeners were interested. At another lecture, however, for which the same number of chairs had been provided, every seat was occupied. Why is it that people don’t listen to one speaker at all and the other gets their full attention? The first speaker used the example of his product to point out features that, it seemed, nobody was interested in – as if his audience didn’t even have the problems he was talking about.
When we present a product, we need to think about how we can provide value to our audience. However, real benefit only occurs when it is relevant to the listener, it affects them or their work, or it solves an existing problem. Only if the listener is interested in you, you can move him to action.
Creating audience relevance in three steps
Let’s take a closer look at the question with a concrete example. Imagine they are presenting a new product: for example, a smartwatch that can measure your pulse or count your steps. Both are great features and certainly solve a problem, no question, but who cares about your product?
Step 1: Which target group might be interested in your new smartwatch?
– All people who wear watches? Probably not.
– All people who wear watches and want to measure their athletic progress? Rather.
But it goes even more detailed:
People, with high pulse,
– who want to do something about it,
– who want to do something about it and don’t yet have a smartwatch.
People who want to be more active during the day,
– who also need a little motivation,
– who also need a little motivation and don’t yet have a smartwatch.
Step 2: Establish relevance!
Select a group that might be interested in your watch. Don’t just talk about technical details. Tell by what activities you can control the pulse, why and when too high a pulse can be dangerous. This is how you establish relevance. If your watch now helps to control your pulse and improve your health, you have immediately reached the third step:
Step 3: Create emotional benefits!
Arguments alone are not enough to convince others and move them to action. Emotions are needed for this. Emotions we like to feel, such as joy, satisfaction or happiness. Or emotions we would rather avoid: like fear, worry, and insecurity. So your watch helps to live a satisfied life without fear and gives you security! Bingo!
Present where your target group is
Good preparation also includes weighing up where a presentation makes sense – and where not. Does your smartwatch need to be showcased at every watch show, or might a health event be more appropriate? Only if you know your target group exactly, you can answer this question.
When preparing and creating your presentation, don’t focus too much on the features of your product (e.g. the features of your smartwatch). Features alone will not convince you. Rather, before each presentation, it is important to adjust the content and message to make it both interesting and relevant to the audience.
I’m a watch wearer, and until two months ago, I hadn’t paid much attention to smartwatches. Only since my doctor noticed irregularities in my pulse has the topic been relevant to me. A presentation about a smartwatch got me moving to make a change!
Patrick Nini first worked for an international manufacturer of banking software and later as a consultant in this industry. He developed his passion for rhetoric and presenting at an early age. Toastmasters, an international non-profit organization promoting public speaking, eventually laid the foundation for his current professional work as a presentation trainer and speaker. With his Speech Pad, Patrick Nini has developed a tool that helps its users to give professional speeches and presentations and to convince others. As founder of the start-up Pitch5, he also offers his customers a virtual presentation coach with the Speech Pad web application. Nini lives in Wels (Upper Austria).
For further reading:
Speech Pad®: Why presenting well is different today
… and how you can learn and apply it
With a foreword by Ilya Grzeskowitz
272 pages, hardcover
€ 34,90 (D) | € 35,90 (A)
GABAL Publishing House, Offenbach 2017
Patrick Nini will also be at this year’s Presentation Rocket Day as an expert and coach. More information about his workshop and Presentation Rocket Day can be found here: www.presentation-rocket-day.com.