Do you grab you audience by their ears? If not then read on and discover 4 ways to make ’em sit up and listen.

Everyone knows that web surfers access sites in micro-seconds, rapidly moving on if not “satisfied”.

The very same thing takes place when you are presenting.

Whether the audience is large or small, individuals have normally made their mind up to “listen or not ” within the first 6.5 seconds.

That’s why introductions are so important.

Four Ways to Capture your Listeners Ears

1. Use an illustration – At a speakers convention recently I noted 50% of them used this technique with illustrations from Radio Telescopes to The Dance of Honey Bees. To be effective it needs to be short, relevant to your theme and understood by the audience.

2. Tell a story – We all love stories. That’s how history was passed on (and embellished) at one time. Some comedians use this technique to great effect (Ronnie Corbet was a master at it). But again the story needs to be short and relevant to the theme of the talk.

3. Questions – There is no better way to engage an audience than by a question that will involve them. It must be open (ie require more than a Yes or No) , stimulating and lead the listener into the main body of the presentation.

4. Quotations – Beware, these need to be very short, pithy, easily understood and by a well-known “authority”. If not you will lose your audience from the very first sentence you speak.

 Examples to follow next time.