Don’t expect your ‘canned’ presentation to work the same way with all audiences every time!
It’s important that you don’t assume that your standard keynote/presentation is going to work for everyone, even if you’ve been saying or doing the same thing for years. We are all different, with different learning styles, different personality filters and different values.
What should you do instead?
- Be sure to do your research prior to every presentation. Work out what your audience is thinking, feeling and doing before you present. Then work out what you want them to be thinking, feeling and doing. Make sure your presentation achieves this outcome for you.
- Work out if what you have to offer will be of value to them. In the business world, be sure you don’t deliver someone else’s presentation because they are away or sick or too busy. You won’t do yourself, the content or the audience justice if it’s not your thing. You’re better to cancel and let the real expert deliver the message when they are bacon deck. Professional speakers, if you believe that what the client is asking for is not your expertise, then be honest and tell them. Ideally even refer someone else! When someone asks me for customer service training I refer them to Peter Merrett and Cath DeVrye. That’s their thing not mine. I’m an authority on persuasive presenting in business. I’d only damage my brand if I tried to be everything to everyone. Whilst it can be hard to turn business away it’s better to decline work with some clients if you don’t believe you can help them.
- Work out the problems and then work out how you’ll solve them. Once you know you’re the best person for the job, tailor your message to specifically fix their problems. You want people walking out at the end feeling you have served them well and their problem is fixed. You’ll get repeat bookings when you have the winning solution to people’s pain.