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Waking the Dead: A Guide to a Killer Presentation

You’re making a presentation, and suddenly, you hear “squeeeeak..clonk, clonk, clonk.” A monster’s on the way!

What do you do? How do you wake the dead? How do you keep beasties and ghouls from ruining your pitch?

Here’s your guide to a killer presentation.

How to Slay a Zombie

Silent and unresponsive, zombies have limited function in their brains, and as a result, do not absorb much during your presentation. They will walk, or stumble, away without learning anything and unable to take any next action steps.

To slay a zombie, typically, you need to aim for the head. Do something to stimulate the other parts of their brain. Snap out of routine with a different format: stand up, ditch the slides or shorten your presentation to 15 minutes. Engage all five senses with brain teasers and tools for doodling. Stream a video or weave photos into your slides that will wake up their brain.

The Best Way to Defeat Vampires

Vampires suck the energy out of the room during your presentation. Not paying attention, they are often hunting down something more interesting on their phones.

To keep vampires from draining the energy out of your presentation, aim for the heart. Do something to appeal to their emotions. Paint your slides in colors that strategically foster a desired emotional reaction (orange for enthusiasm, blue for serenity, etc.). Tell a funny story. Share a motivational quote. Structure your presentation as a narrative story.

Taking Down a Werewolf

By the cloak of night—or the privacy of being behind a screen—a werewolf will stray from the pack during your presentation. Driven by the moonlight—or other shiny distractions on second screens—a werewolf will choose multitasking over reading your agenda.

You need a silver bullet solution to take down a werewolf. If you’re presenting via video conferencing, use it to your advantage. Get on camera to command attention and request that your guests turn on their webcams (so no one can hide). When all else fails, tap into the ancient power of cuteness: no one can resist kittens and babies.

Presentation zombies are hard to slay. Aim for the head.

How to Make Frankenstein’s Monster Your Ally

Frankenstein’s monster will terrorize your presentation. With side gossip, irrelevant questions and long tangents, they distract the other villagers like a sideshow attraction.

Use the element of fire to scare away this monster. Get them fired up for your presentation by making your opening slide loud and concise. Come in hot with data to establish credibility.

Getting Rid of Ghosts

Ghosts will spook and scare you by causing noisy distractions in the background. Don’t let them haunt your presentation.

Ghosts are often just trying to communicate with you. Give your ghosts in the audience a way to do that by stopping to ask questions, letting them chat online or pausing to survey your audience in your online meeting room.

Before you take out your baseball bat, sharpen your stake, shine your silver bullets, light a torch or break out your proton pack, use a little science to wake the dead with a killer presentation. Download the “The Science of Sales Presentations” eBook today to turn monsters and freaks into fans.

About Ashley Speagle

Ashley Speagle is a Florida-born, Georgia-raised communications specialist, couch movie critic, dream interpreter, acrophobic adventure seeker, outdoors enthusiast, and easy-going introvert.

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