public speaking tips

Presentation Quick Tip #6 - How To Keep Your Audience Engaged

One of the biggest fears or moments of panic is when you see your audience becoming disinterested in your presentation. They are either not paying attention, being distracted by the latest game or, more than likely, the latest Grumpy Cat photo. Whatever it may be, you as the presenter hate that moment. But it doesn't have to be that way...

Check out the video for a quick explanation of what to do or keep reading for an in-depth look at this topic.

If YouTube is unavailable in your area, please click the following link to watch or right-click to download: Presentation Quick Tip #6 - How To Keep Your Audience Engaged

Video length 1:08  

Yes, it's true that people have a limited attention span, but it doesn't mean we have to let that rule, or ruin, our presentations. What you have to do is re-engage or reacquire their attention just before their attention span heads south.

How long before that happens?

Most experts say that human attention span ranges from 5-10 minutes, depending on which expert you're referring to. With so many distractions, especially from always present smart phones, I'm sure the limits of human attention have gone down.

In the case of presentations, it's better to err on the lower end of the scale. Therefore, I suggest re-engaging or re-acquiring the audience's attention once every 3-5 minutes.

Great, but how the heck do I do that??

To be honest, it actually doesn't matter what you do. The point is that if you've been speaking for a few minutes, you have to break the monotony and snap people out of their trance. I'm not saying that your content is boring. I'm just saying that you must do something.

For example, you could show, or talk about, something relevant to your presentation. A video demonstrating your point is always good. In fact, Apple uses this technique in all their presentations.

Another thing you could do is give your audience an interesting fact or statistic that reinforces what you're saying. Again, just make sure it's relevant.

If you have time and it's appropriate, or if you plan it, you could tell a personal story related to your topic. But be careful that the outcome of your story isn't predictable or your audience will lose interest before you ever finish.

Finally, a live demo of some sort can also be used. If possible, get your audience directly involved to connect them what you're saying in a more direct, tangible way.

The point is...

Whatever you do, just make sure you do it and be aware of your presentation's timing so your audience never has a chance to go off into la-la land... Unless that's what you're trying to do.

Thanks and talk to you next week.




Hi, it's Carl Kwan here with Presentation Quick Tip #6.

In this week's video, you're going to learn about how to time and space out the content in your presentation to keep your audience from getting bored.

Now, everyone has a very limited attention span.

They can only pay attention for maybe 3-5 minutes, maybe 7 minutes if you're lucky.

So what you wanna do is after 3-5 minutes, you wanna say, "But here's something really interesting."

And then present a fact or a statistic or some kind of really interesting piece of information that will re-engage your audience.

And make sure though that that piece of information really is interesting or they're still gonna be bored.

So remember, if you want to engage your audience and keep their attention, and make sure they don't kinda start dozing off, every 3-5 minutes introduce something that is going to be interesting to them…A stat or a figure, or whatever kind of fact or information that they will find interesting, that'll re-engage them.

And that is Presentation Quick Tip #6.

If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below this video.

Thanks for watching.

Talk to you again soon.


Presentation Quick Tip #2 - Use A Quote To Introduce Topics

It's time for Presentation Quick Tip #2 and this time I wanted to talk about how to use quotes in presentations. Specifically, how to use a quote to introduce topics because I think a lot of people are confused by how to best use quotes in presentations. And so I've got a simple, super-useful way to use quotes that you'll find very handy. Instead of your typical, "Now I'm going to talk about Topic A," start talking about your topic with a relevant quote.

Here's how it would work…

If your topic was about increasing productivity, then find a quote about getting things done. For example, here's a great quote from one of my personal heroes, Bruce Lee: “If you spend too much time thinking about a thing, you'll never get it done.”

What YOU can say during your presentation is, "Bruce Lee once said, 'If you spend too much time thinking about a thing, you'll never get it done.' and that's why I wanted to discuss some ideas about increasing overall productivity.

But here's the coolest part…

You can now summarize your presentation using the quotes, instead of just listing what you said. Now you can say, "We heard that Bruce Lee said, 'If you spend too much time thinking about a thing, you'll never get it done.' I then introduced three ways we could boost productivity."

Pretty cool, huh? I knew you'd think so.

Anyway, below is the video I made about this Presentation Quick Tip and the video script is just below the video.

Hope this helps and talk to you again soon.



If YouTube is unavailable in your area, please left-click to view or right-click to download the video here: Presentation Quick Tip #2 - Use A Quote To Introduce Topics

Video length 0:53



Hey there, it's Carl Kwan here.

So in this video I'm going to give you another presentation quick tip, while on vacation.

What you can do when you introduce a topic to get the audience's attention is to use a quote.

And one of the best ways you can do that, is to say, "Henry Ford used to say: If you think you can, or you think you can't, either way you're right."

That'd be a great way to segue into a topic about motivation or getting things done.

Then at the end of your presentation, you can then repeat the same quote to reinforce what you taught to your audience or what you said to your audience, help them refresh their memory.

So use it to introduce your topic, then also use the quote to summarize your presentation.

And that is a presentation quick tip for you.

If you have any questions or comments about this one, please let me know by leaving your questions or comments below this video and we'll talk to you again soon.

Thanks. Bye-bye.