Remember to Hook the Audience at the Start

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You are sitting in the audience and the presenter begins. They cover the agenda (in horrific detail), company overview and history all with a monotone non-energetic delivery style.  As audience members we start drifting, disengaging. Remember, a simple failure to connect immediately with the audience causes an emotional (willing) departure.

Will the presenter be able to get the audience back? This is doubtful unless the presenter possesses magic show skills. In order to capture the audience, you should hook them from the start. Imagine that you are presenting to an audience of baby boomer retirees. If you opened with imagery and tag lines associating with things from their generation , like 10 cent Clark candy bars or television sets where you had to actually get up to turn the channel, your chance of hooking them at the start increases dramatically.  Your other choice would be to start with the history of your financial services company?

Think about those movies like the re-make of Titanic. Right from the beginning they hook you with the modern day elderly woman survivor recanting her story, and then the clock turns back. This is not want the audience expected; it was a hook, to garner our attention immediately from the onset.

We often forget that the audience always wants to be entertained, even in a business presentation. This does not imply that the presenter needs acting skills, but rather to pay attention to what might interest the audience and when it is best to present that.

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