3 Ways to Keep Your Audience’s Attention

By Vincent Ivan Phipps, M.A.

Stop boring your audiences with dull presentations. Great content can be diminished by poor presentation skills. It is your responsibility as the speaker to ensure you content and presentation are attention worthy.

Here are three ways to keep your listeners engaged:

Use storytelling.  Behavioral science tells us that 68 percent of the population want a personal and emotional connection with your message. Before giving the next presentation, share why you personally feel invested and what motivates you to support your company or vision.

Keep stories short.
Make sure the story is relevant.
Practice going into and exiting the story.

Ask questions. People love to feel smart. Help them feel more intelligent by incorporating questions throughout your presentations. Allow discussion time if an answer deviates from your topic. When people are talking, they are engaged with your message.

Avoid “yes” and “no” answerable questions.
Use intrigue questions such as, “What would you do if…” and “How can we improve…”?
Make questions simple.

Customize content. Adapt your message to your listeners. Research your audience’s industry. Learn some of their buzzwords. Modify your demographic terms so instead of saying "clients," you might say "members," "students," "staff" or "team."

Read about current trends.
Ask questions before your presentation. 
Use organizational or industry phrases.

Use these three approaches and you will see you audiences smiling more at you and looking less at their phones and watches.


Vincent Phipps is the owner of Communication VIP Training and Coaching.