Making Your Presentations Pop


 

Presentations are evolving in intriguing ways.  Quiet Influencers who can synthesize data by packing a powerful visual punch win points. Many of my introverted clients find that the anxiety of public speaking lessens when they prepare high impact visuals. These images can express more than any words.

A few examples:

1. The Personal Is Universal 

There are stories in photos that can be used to make a point and draw the audience in.  A few years back I heard someone give a talk on humor. What I remember is a series of consecutive family photos from the 1960s.   One photo after another showed his brothers and sisters wearing the same Halloween warlock costume year after year. The costume became a witch outfit the years the girls wore it.  You didn’t have a choice in his family:)  My mind flashed back to the unusual costumes of my youth and the lack of choice I had, especially the time Mom dressed me as a Russian Sputnik space rocket complete with aluminum foil and a cone head (still looking for the photo to show you!:)

This kind of creative connection with your audience will help your presentation or sales pitch have the effect you want.

2. Don’t Be Afraid to Go “Out There.” 

Here is another example that arrived in my inbox this week from NSA-GA.  Designed by member and visual wunderkind Tom Nixon  it is such a clever way to promote an event! Do you think that people will be more likely to consider going?

3. Pull Quotes

Finally, take a peek at the creative presentation entrepreneur and visionary Moe Abdou of 33 Voices put together from a recent discussion we had about Quiet Influence. I love the idea of pulling quotes from an audio to make them pop to the surface. He took an interview and made it come alive by inviting listeners and learners in.

How can you be creative in presenting your material? Do tell.

12 thoughts on “Making Your Presentations Pop

  1. Moe Abdou

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Jennifer – the more that I follow your framework and strategy, the more that I realize that it really does boil down to your two power words – Quiet Influence. Whether you’re giving a talk or crafting a presentation, getting to the essence is what distinguishes the greats; and at heart we’re all introverts. I find it a lot more compelling when the presenter uses visuals to demonstrate her point – not only is it sticky and memorable; more importantly it shows imagination to connect images to ideas. Bravo!

    Reply
    1. Jennifer

      Thanks Moe. I love what you say about keeping it simple. Great visuals encourage that. Thanks for your great work on getting messages out to the world on 33 Voices!

      Reply
  2. Tricia Molloy

    I love what Tom created for our gala!

    Big, bold photos are key to getting an audience’s attention and making it memorable. When it fits the message, I like to use photos of my kids and dogs and up close flowers from my garden.

    I recently saw a friend ‘s slide that featured an adorable picture of her when she was two with a few introductory bullets as her bio. Very clever.

    Reply
    1. Jennifer Kahnweiler Post author

      Thanks for your comments Tricia. I agree that the images need to fit the message.

      Reply
  3. Kenny Zail

    Tom’s slide “popped” because he took what was familiar Grant Wood’s famous painting American Gothic and changed it so slightly, to make it humorous and clever. This got our attention and our willingness to explore the slide further. In this case “pop” meant to have the viewer intrigued – great job Tom Nixon.

    Reply
    1. Jennifer Kahnweiler Post author

      I agree Kenny. Making a slight change can bring the viewer in. Appreciate your comment.

      Reply
  4. Tom Nixon

    Glad you liked that graphic. I played around with a few ideas – how to grab attention and still show that we are a “fun-loving” group. I tried modifying a few antique family portraits and then came up with this. I think it was an example of keep throwing stuff on the wall until something sticks!

    Reply
    1. Jennifer Kahnweiler Post author

      Tom, thanks for the great description here of your creative process. As a professional graphic artist you have to mess around too! How comforting:)

      Reply
  5. Dez Thornton

    Jennifer, your post acutely reminded me that a “popping” presentation, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. The greatest presenters always do the preliminary work of figuring out how to make their audiences’ eyes pop. Each time I have the privilege of reading your work or hearing you speak, it reminds me why I first fell in love with speaking- her beauty radiates from the inside out, just like an introverted leader. Thanks for moving the speaking industry forward.

    Reply
    1. Jennifer Kahnweiler Post author

      Thank you for your comments..Dez…I have also found that introverted leaders and quiet influencers always prepare, a key differentiator in our fast moving organizations.

      Reply

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