Participation is a key part of learning, so if you can make your presentation more interactive it can help your audience to get more out of it and make your talk more memorable. Equally, it can take some of the pressure off of you as a presenter. Here are four tips you can use to make your presentation interactive.
Show your audience it’s OK to interact
We’ve all been in conference sessions where the speaker will ask a question a question at the end and be met with a wall of silence. This is often because the audience have been silent for so long that they collectively don’t feel comfortable getting involved. To stop this from being the case, you need to find a way to break the ice so that it gets people in the session talking.
You’re effectively showing them that you encourage participation and that it is fine for them to get involved. One way to do this is to start your presentation off with quick-fire questions. You can then continue this theme through the talk.
Allow them to respond anonymously
Sometimes members of the audience aren’t willing to share their opinions or ideas. One way to get around this is to allow them to respond anonymously. Use an audience response system (ARS) that can take responses from everyone anonymously. This allows your audience to be involved without having to give up their anonymity.
Ask questions throughout your presentation
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that your audience will lose interest in your presentation if it’s just 30 minutes of you talking at them. Yes, you may well have some excellent points to make, but an audience’s attention span can only last so long.
To stop this from derailing your presentation you should break up your talk with questions for the audience. This additionally functions as a way to encourage engagement and interactivity. With an ARS you can also collate the data and present it as a graph.
Take a poll
This is another opportunity for you to use an ARS. If you can integrate a poll into your presentation it could be interesting to take the results and apply them to the subject matter. It may throw out interesting ideas that you can then use to enliven discussions. Alternatively it can reinforce your point and impress your audience by showing them you know what you’re talking about.