Keeping Their Attention During Your PowerPoint Presentation

by Adrian Perez on August 22, 2019

Have you ever mentally checked out during a PowerPoint Presentation or Google Slides Presentation? Okay, that’s a rhetorical question - we all have experience being there. Actually, studies show that on average, our attention spans severely drop off after the first 10 minutes of a presentation.

Hence, you need to find ways to make your presentation stand out while keeping your audience’s attention. Easier said than done, right? Today we’re going to make it a little more possible for you to layout a strategy that supercharges your presentation and gives your audience something to rave about.

 

Keep Your PowerPoint Presentation Brief

Considering the ‘10-minute dropoff’, you might want to think about trimming the fat off of your presentation and condensing it into 10 minutes or less. Granted, some presentations require much longer than this - but you get the idea. When reviewing your PowerPoint Presentation, ask yourself, “is this absolutely necessary or this just filler?”

 

Tell a Story

 

Honestly, the last thing you want to do while giving a PowerPoint Presentation is simply reading from your PowerPoint theme. Your audience is interested in you as a person, not a few Google Slides filled with text. Considering that, try crafting a narrative for your presentation that ties into your overall message. You should be keeping your audience on their toes wondering what happens next.

If you’re a sales professional, chances are you’re pitching a solution. Hence, a great way to start your PowerPoint presentation is by telling a story that presents the way things are. Then, you start explaining to your audience about how you found a better way - while working your product or service into the solution. Preferably, you should be presenting a success story - and not just a sales pitch.

 

Use a Beautiful PowerPoint Theme

Your PowerPoint theme sets the tone for your PowerPoint Presentation. Truthfully, humans make all kinds of judgments based off of appearances within seconds. Hence, you want to take every step to ensure that you’re giving off the right first impression. Professional PowerPoint themes often use very stylish color palettes and unique slides that help keep your presentation interesting. Why use the standard, dull stock PowerPoint Templates when you can download professionally designed PowerPoint templates for free?

 

Use HD Images

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. When it comes to Google Slides presentations, they are not lying. Keep in mind that your PowerPoint slides should be acting as a visual aid, they should not be the ‘main course’ of your presentation - but your ‘side dish’. Hence, it’s important to not rely on your PowerPoint presentation too much for text, etc. Use it to present high-quality images that support the message you are sharing.

 

Engage Your Audience

Interacting with your audience is a great way to keep their attention and it shows them you care about their feedback. Also, asking them questions also gets them to think critically and become a part of your presentation. Ultimately, their investment in your presentation helps to capture their attention more.

Additionally, engaging your audience gives you a chance to go off-script for a bit and enjoy yourself while showing the audience a good time, too.

 

Give Your Audience a Break From Your PowerPoint Presentation

While mentioning the 10-minute dropoff, we acknowledged that cutting your presentation at 10 minutes isn’t always an option. Hence, inserting rest periods into longer Google Slides presentations helps your audience recreate themselves for a moment or two while you prepare for the next segment.

Truthfully, your audience may have a notification on their phone that’s distracting them from your presentation. Give them a moment to check it - otherwise, they will be more concerned about the contents of their notification...and not your presentation.

A PowerPoint presentation does not have to be long and dull. Keep in mind that you’re competing with all sorts of distractions for your audience’s attention. Ideally, your presentation is giving them a great reason to tune in and see what happens next. Thanks for reading, and go get ‘em!

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