5 Ways To Host The Perfect Online Presentation

Online presentations have become commonplace in the business world. It is a form of presentation that we can no longer do without these days. But an online presentation is accompanied by a number of unique challenges.

If we provide a physical presentation, we can shake people’s hands and hold the audience’s attention with our non-verbal communication. An online audience is more easily distracted and generally has a much shorter attention span.

Here are five tips to help you increase the success of your online presentations:

Tip 1: Keep it within 30 minutes

Our attention span online is much shorter than during physical presentations. If your presentation, including the question, takes more than 30 minutes, that’s simply too much of a good thing.

However, think carefully about what you want to do during these 30 minutes. Maybe you want to get a potential client excited about an appointment, or try to persuade your audience to introduce you to a decision-maker within their organisation. Whatever your goal is, make sure you have a concise presentation that people remember.

Tip 2: Recognizability + curiosity = involvement

Half of the human brain – made up of 80 billion nerve cells – is involved in processing what we see. We are able to do this incredibly fast.

Spend some time and effort to make sure your prospect gets an attractive presentation that is both familiar and arouses curiosity. This will make your presentation more engaging, and your message will linger longer.

Tip 3: Watch your voice

Your voice is a much more important tool in online presentations than when you present in person. Put energy into your voice and adjust your tone and speed of speech to any point of conversation.

Emphasis is also a powerful tool. Repeat important points twice, but do not exaggerate. The same goes for pauses. Pauses can make the difference between an excellent presentation and a nice presentation. It gives your audience time to absorb important information and possibly take notes.

Tip 4: Make sure you have the right equipment.

Just like a physical presentation, your success depends on good preparation. Check half an hour before you start whether everything is working properly. Test your audio and video equipment, check your presentation for errors and make sure you have all the necessary material.

A tip from experts: invest in good headphones with noise reduction. This will greatly improve the audience’s experience. Do not rely on the speakers and microphone of your laptop. Choose a professional approach.

Tip 5: Think like a film director

Turn on your webcam and take a critical look at what’s around you. If your background consists of grey office walls, it may help to wear a contrasting shirt / blouse / jacket etc. Make sure you are the hero of the story and stand out enough.

Also pay attention to the lighting. Do not sit in front of a window, because you will completely disappear into the light. One possibility is to stick paper over two desk lamps and put them on your left and right.

Finally, you might want to consider using set pieces to get the conversation going. Think of an eye-catching poster on the wall behind you, a shelf with interesting books or an autographed football. You’ll be amazed at what people notice and raise.

Good luck!

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  1. Thank you Louis for the sharing! I would add the following tips to yours, and will concentrate on the support presentation itself:
    if you use a powerpoint google doc, you can add the pluggin “Poll everywhere for google slides” to transform your presentation into a lively conversation with the entire room: participants can submit live responses straight to the google slide. Go on the website polleverwhere.com

    20 slides, maximum 20 seconds talk per slide, use image rather than words sentence –> make the storytelling, and the presence of the facilitator, more important that any long sentences and text on the slides. This is a good opportunity to transform yourself as a the storyteller, conveying emotions, dynamis. YOU are more important that any slide deck.
    I would like to mention @mik.annick.suetens who told me having experience with pecha kucha format.

    I read in a recent article the following tip that I would like to add: to avoid the “boring” / “falling asleep” effect among your audience, inject some visual dynamic instead of using the same format/design for all your slides; change background color, the position of your text/visual, one slide per key point, use transition effect between slides/inside slide one text/pictures appears, use full screen pictures. Your objective is to stimulate the eyes and keeps engagement high.

    In betoobe, we recommend to have brief Mindshare rather than 3h-long sessions. Therefore, “slice” your subject into small and still meaningful parts. Do not feel oblige to share all what you know/experienced at once! Eventually, it will lead you to organise a series of Mindshare and take the opportunity to give some homework to your audience for them to deep-dive into the subject.
    I also personnally see it as a wonderful opportunity to extend your betoobe followers (clients …) base.

    From time to time, stop sharing your presentation, and take the opportunity to make yourself visible to your audience in order to put some emphasis on what you are saying: use your body (zoom out or put your camera further from you), stand-up, use your hands, or even come closer to the camera and use the intensity of your look!

    Have you ever heard the famous “Do you see my presentation” when attending an online webinar … Sounds familiar … to avoid this, connect to your videoconference with a separate account that you use only for that: it will allow you to see, as a participant, what you are sharing as a facilitator.

    If you have other tips, please share and expand the knowledge of betoobe members in facilitating their future Mindshares!