Presenting Skills: Know Your Presentation Audience

In order to deliver an effective presentation, you must know your audience. The following questions will help you think through the needs of your audience:

/1 What are they like? Think through a day in their lives. Outline what a typical day looks like for them to help you understand life from their perspective.

/2  Why are they here? What do *they* think they’re going to get out of this presentation? Are they willing participants or mandatory attendees? Highlight what’s in it for them.

/3 What keeps them up at night? Everyone has a fear, a pain point, a thorn in their side. Let your audience know that you empathize—and that you’re here to help them.

/4 How can you solve their problems? How are you going to make their lives better? Point to benefits you know they’ll care about.

/5 What do you want them to do? What’s their part in your plan? Make sure there’s a clear action for your audience to take.

/6 How might they resist? What will keep them from adopting your message and carrying out your call to action? Remove any obstacles you can.

/7 How can you best reach them? How do they prefer to receive information? Do they want materials to review before the presentation? Afterward? Do they like the room to be set up a certain way? What atmosphere or type of media will best help them see your point of view? Give them what they want, how they want it.