The New Year will likely bring new and shiny marketing strategies. Companies will be feverishly creating QR codes, trying out some cool 3D web designs, and getting more involved with new social networks such as Google+. However, companies should not discount some of the more traditional tactics companies use to help grow a business. Although worrying about referrals or radio commercials is a bit less exciting that watching 2,000 people receive your tweet, there are ways your company can spice up the “boring” marketing strategies. If you’re looking for something new for the New Year, consider improving something old. One of my favorite marketing strategies: the presentation.
Lots of businesses have slowly moved away from attending seminars and creating power point presentations. However (whether you realize it or not), your company creates presentations all the time. A podcast is a type of presentation, and so is a business proposal pitch you might make to an investor or potential advertiser. There are specific tricks to keep in mind when doing specific types of presentations, but there are a few universal rules that have slowly begun to fall through the cracks. Consider some of these tricks to help make sure your presentation is as interesting and exciting as those shiny new 2012 marketing approaches:
Lots of businesses have slowly moved away from attending seminars and creating power point presentations.
Why Presentations Aren’t a Thing of the Past
- Be Animated – This may seem obvious, but business leaders who aren’t trained in public speaking often come across as very monotone. The best thing you can do to make sure your presentation isn’t boring is focus on your voice. There are a lot of things to worry about when giving a presentation, but I assure you this should be high on the priority list. Practice fluctuating your voice at important moments. It’s also a good idea to use hand gestures and move around. Whether you’re right in front of someone or in front of a camera, this is sure to make a huge difference.
- Be Passionate – Even if you’re really bored and uninterested in your presentation, you must act passionate. The best way to do this is to actually be passionate about the topic. Look deeply into the topic and why it really matters, and try and channel that energy into your presentation. Part of seeming passionate is being animated, but there are subtle things that the audience will be up on if you’re not careful—eye rolling, mumbling, laughing as you speak, etc. If someone asks a question, answer it as if it is the most important thing that’s been said all day.
- Use Visuals – The New Year will be all about the infographic, and this idea of visual stimulation should definitely transfer over into your presentations. People learn in different ways, so it’s important to incorporate any sort of chart or graph to help express your point visually. You can even pass out a handout so that people can follow along at their own pace. Some people get nervous when they think they can’t write down all of the information, so it’s always good to have a sheet or an email with all the information laid out clearly.
- Watch the Pace – The pace of a presentation is very important. Although many people know this, they have a hard time putting it into action. This is one tip that will really take practice and a conscious effort; however it is possible. Remember to breathe and stop for questions. This will not only help you stay calm and your presentation sound more natural, but those watching the presentation will be able to gather more information. If you speak too fast, people could miss important information. If this happens, there was really no point in the presentation in the first place!
- Make Connections – It is important to know your audience and draw them in by making connections. This can be difficult when you’re talking about something boring because it may seem like the topic has nothing to do with the audience members, but it is possible. Try to show how your information can affect a person’s daily life or profession. If you have a hard time coming up with something creative, consider asking a writer to help you brainstorm.
Presentations will never disappear completely, so it’s important that you and your employees alike understand a few basic tips about giving a presentation. Soon podcasts will be all the rage, so your company will need to have someone ready to go with good speaking skills. If your company isn’t used to speaking in front of a crowd or camera, this could be disastrous. Consider going over these tips with your employees in order to ensure that you’ll have an interesting presentation that can keep up with those shiny new marketing methods.
Amanda DiSilvestro is a writer on topics ranging from social media to credit card processing. She writes for an online resource that gives advice on topics including document software to small businesses and entrepreneurs for the leading business directory, Business.com.