I’ve been a director for countless corporate conventions filled with speaker after speaker. Some of them are real pros and some of them … are not. And you can tell just by the way they treat the crew. There are conventions … at conventions – things you should do as a presenter … before you go on.
One convention is to give the director or technician a script of your talk, complete with a list of visuals on the left hand side. If you’re really classy, you’ll provide a print-out of the visuals themselves, but a script with a word description on the left works just as well.
Why would you do this? – provide a script, that is?
Here’s the rule for all of you that are hooked on text slides. It’s the rule of 66. It means six lines of text MAX, six words per line MAX. And a title, of course.
Don’t do this!
Any more and you have a cluttered slide – like the one on the left. This is an actual slide from a recent convention. It wasn’t even up long enough to be able to read it all! Do you think your audience will remember all this plus the rest of your presentation. (I guess that doesn’t need an answer …)
And don’t tell me you can’t get a point down to under 6 words. I have yet to come across a situation in which that was true. Read More …
What to do with handouts? Do I give them out before I speak, after … during?
Here’s the traditional handout. Three slides to a page – a place for notes on the right hand side.
The pros – an appropriate place to write notes – right next to the visual they relate to. People remember things they think about and write down. That’s good!
Cons – rustling papers, which can be distracting. People flip ahead. And after your presentation, maybe one percent ever look at them again. So you do all that work, kill a tree or two and it generally ends up in the round file.
More cons than pros.
If it’s just a simple print-out of your presentation screens, they’re usually hard to Read More …
This weekend, I received a copy of another PowerPoint presentation that consists almost entirely of black text on a white background. The bottom line? It’s a no-no.
Think about looking at the text on a light bulb. When it’s on, it’s incredibly difficult to read! It’s almost the same as trying to read a projected screen of black text on white.
You’ve got black letters surrounded by all that intense white light blasting out at you. Because the projector is shooting intense light at the screen, which reflects it back into your eyes.
The black letters themselves are affected by that beam of bright projected, light. They appear to become thinner. That’s because the bright, white light “bleeds” onto them. They aren’t actually thinner. However, Read More …
Here’s a simple tip that will give your graphs much more impact.
Make the titles “active.”
Now … I don’t mean “animated.” I mean active. When I refer to a title as “active,” I mean that the text helps to advance your position, rather than just stating what the subject matter is. Most of the time, it means putting a verb in the title. Let’s look at an example.
Here’s a nice looking graph of Gross Monthly Sales.
OK … so what? What about them? What is that graph trying to tell me?
First of all, let’s get rid of all the clutter. 3D looks pretty, but most of the time gets in the way of the message. Get rid of that, too. Read More …
Using audio clips in your presentation sounds so simple! But if there’s one thing that strikes fear into the hearts of convention technicians, that’s it!
Because it’s either too loud … or inaudible … or the presenter simply hasn’t told the technician that’s it there at all … and then wonders why it didn’t play.
So, tips. One … make sure your sound levels are consistent. That’ll require you to have some audio software to check each file and raise or lower the levels. Or some presentation software allows you to change levels within the program.
Two … make sure you test the sound on the day ahead of your talk. And make sure the sound files are in the right folder AND that you’re Read More …
There’s nothing that makes me crazier than to see really bad grammar in two foot high letters on the screen.
Here’s an example: 5 DVD’s. I see this all the time. But it’s incorrect. The apostrophe means it’s possessive … NOT plural.
If it’s plural … it should look like this: “5 CDs.” 5 DVDs – the same thing. Now, if I said “I put the DVD’s cases in the trunk,” it would be correct with an apostrophe “s” … You see, the cases belong to the DVDs – and so it’s possessive. Although it’s kind of a weird sentence.
So … apostrophes do not generally denote plurals. But there are exceptions … After all, it IS English.
Single letters and numbers require an apostrophe “s” Read More …
Words actually don’t exist … to our brains, at any rate. We don’t see words as a series of letters. We see them as pictures.
I know … that changes things. When we read a word, we actually see it as a whole bunch of little tiny pictures. We look for features like horizontal or vertical lines, rounded corners, etc. and then we think back to our library of letter images and match it up to what we’ve stored from the past.
Over time, we get pretty darn good at this process and it takes us milliseconds to do all the calculations and read a sentence. So reading text is highly taxing on our brains. As a result, text presentations are simply not very effective Read More …
With over thirty-five years in advertising, marketing, and television, Peter brings a wealth of knowledge and business experience to any situation. From the top retailers like The Bay, to Canada’s largest energy multinationals, Peter has been at the forefront ...