5 ways to resonate remotely

Nancy Duarte

Written by

Nancy Duarte

The trend of presentations being delivered virtually—online and on devices—means we have to work harder than ever to keep our audiences engaged.

How can you resonate remotely? Use these 5 tips from my recent HBR webinar, Mastering Remote Presentations, to make sure you’re more interesting than their inbox.

HBR Guide to Persuasive Presentations book on a wood table

1) Be Human
We usually build trust through body language and eye contact, and this is still true when presenting remotely.

  • Keep your slides simple and clean – they are an extension of you
  • Look directly into the camera, not down at your notes
  • Use photos of people to simulate an audience

2) Keep the Audio Interesting
Remember that without a camera, your voice and slides are the only tools you have to connect with your audience.

  •  Stand up when speaking, and don’t be afraid to use hand motions.
  • Vary your pitch, speed, and volume.
  • Feature a guest speaker to add variety

3) Remove Distractions, For Them and You
Most of your attendees will be listening through headphones – every noise you make is noticeable.

  • Remove audio distractions: cell phone, e-mail pop ups, rustling papers
  • Ask a moderator to help wrangle technology and field questions from attendees.
  • Log into the meeting at least 30 minutes early to test the technology

4) Lure and Re-lure Your Audience
Creating contrast in your message will add suspense and keep your audience engaged.

  • Alternate between today’s problem and tomorrow’s solution – “what is” and “what could be”

5) Have Fun
We spend most of our waking hours working, let the time you spend with your audience be a chance for both of you to relax, smile, and laugh.=

  • Use props
  • Hold a contest
  • Plan a S.T.A.R. Moment (Something They’ll Always Remember)

The ability to resonate during remote presentations is an important skill as technology continues to change the persuasive communication landscape.