The world has been screaming "Lock Down!, Social Distancing!, and Stay Online". My first thought was how is this going to affect school? What about the people around me? How about my interests? It was concerning. However, life continued, with a few tweaks. Online schooling did not stop teachers from giving homework, projects, and presentations. Wait, online presentations? How could I give a presentation online that is as impactful as an in-person presentation? Here are some of the tips that I learned.
Just because you are presenting in front of a computer screen doesn't mean you can forget your basic lessons in Public Speaking. The first tip in giving any convincing presentation is to make sure that people believe you know the topic which is shown through the confidence and emotion in your voice. With presentations going online, your voice is even more important than before. Since you do not have the power of body language to show emotion, you must make up for it with your vocal variety. A few time-tested breathing exercises like deep breathing can come in handy. Take a big breath in – expanding your lungs down and your abdomen out – and then force all that air out on a “ha.”
Pictures speak louder than words. It is easier to connect with your audience by showing pictures or interacting with them through patterns and colors. So, how do you do that when you are presenting virtually? The two most powerful words in your arsenal are "Imagine this…". If you cannot visually show the audience a picture, paint it for them with words. A few proven methods are telling a story, using vivid sensory details and descriptions.
Fluidity conserves the impact of your presentation. Virtual presentations open up the possibilities of utilizing advanced tools simultaneously. Take the time to research and understand your video conferencing features, such as the whiteboard, the screen sharing, breakout rooms, etc. For example, let's say you have a PowerPoint/keynote for only a part of your presentation. Switching screens frequently take away your impact. Instead, add an animation/build in your PowerPoint/keynote to offset a need to switch screens.
You can rock your next presentation with these simple, but vital tips to captivate your virtual audience. All the best!