Taking Form – Your Persuasive Presentation’s Structure
Closing the “Logic Gap” is an extremely important step in developing a persuasive presentation. It’s an exercise that ensures you’re meeting your audience’s needs, or concerns. It will result in a set of targeted points that support your solution. These key points will form the body of your presentation.
Once you have all your main points fully developed and supported, you need to decide on the order in which you want to present them. It can mean the difference between success and failure. For example:
Fred is the manager of an audio-visual department. He was in the midst of developing a presentation to suggest his boss go with his recommendation to purchase 25 new projectors. The old ones had been breaking down and costing the company time and money. He didn’t know whether to handle the “time and inconvenience” or the “money” concern first.
Here was the dilemma: if management thought the cost was too high, they might not purchase them, even though he could prove they would save money in the long run. Should he get over the hurdle of the cost first? On the other hand, the old projectors were giving them a lot of headaches – lost time and a lot of frustration. Should he show how the new projectors would save time and remove the frustration first, before tackling the cost?
If you don’t have the right strategy in place, you stand the chance of blowing your presentation right at the first major point. So, think about the impact each of your points will make and whether the order will affect how your audience views your solution.
Once you’ve determined the order of your main points, it’s time to step back and determine what “form” you want your presentation to take. For example, will it be a linear presentation (order of importance), the points presented chronologically or a embedded within a story? Or perhaps you want to contrast a previous situation with the new one you’re proposing. There are ten main forms your presentation can take and you’ll find them all listed and fully described within Presenter-Pro.
Decide on a form and then simply work your key points into that form. You’ll still have evidence to support each point but it will need to br weaved appropriately into the form you choose.
Follow these steps to developing a structure for the body of your presentation and you’ll hit your audience’s needs squarely on the head. You’ll keep them on track by presenting your argument logically and be highly successful in just about any presentation you care to take on. Good luck!