Before You Speak, Know Your Audience
Even a well-organized presentation with appealing visual aids can fail to reach its objectives if the presenter's delivery style isn't effective. Whether the purpose of your presentation is to inform, motivate or persuade, the delivery style depends largely on the target audience. The first step in preparing an impactful, well coordinated presentation is acquiring a clear understanding of the audience.
The next time you have an important presentation to deliver use these 4 audience analysis questions to prepare your message:
- What are the characteristics of the audience (age, education, religious/political/ethnic background)?
- What is the audience's current opinion (positive/neutral/negative; well informed/not well informed; involved/uninvolved)?
- What outcome do you want?
- What kinds of appeals will most likely provoke the desired responses (examples, statistics, expert opinion, lay opinion, stories)?