Archive for the ‘Understanding your audience’ Category

Has Westpac got it wrong?

Westpac Banking Corporation in Australia recently launched their TV advert campaign about how they have changed. The campaign highlights that they are now more customer focused. The only problem is, the ads are not saying that.

The key line in all the ads is ‘I am… We are…’ then they explain what that means. Their explanation includes being ‘Factor 30 sunscreen’, ‘not swimming for 30 minutes after eating’ (what ever that means!) and other lines aimed at getting Gen X & Y to remember the fun of their childhood.

But I don’t care about Westpac – I care about me, in the same was as you care about you.

Your thoughts please…….

Cheers

Darren Fleming


The Solution

Often we have to present information that we don’t think our audience will understand or accept. This new information may be moving them away from what they have always believed or it may be stretching them to consider doing something completely different. It may simply be beyond their level of comprehension. The question is, ‘How do we get around it?’

The solution is always based on the problem. Here are the steps:

1. Tell the audience that you will be sharing something new (prepares for learning)
2. Tell them the benefits of what you are presenting (WIIFM)
3. Tell them who will be doing this in the future (third party endorsement)
4. Tell them that it may take a few explanations to get it – and that you want them to question it (shows strength of argument)
5. Tell them why industry leaders will be adopting your new ideas (gets the audience to self-select as industry leaders)
6. Tell them what your idea is.

Please share your thoughts below.

Cheers, Darren


PowerPoint and your Logo – an unhealthy relationship

Ever since PowerPoint invaded the world 10+ years ago, the marketing department has insisted that the company logo must be on ALL the slides. It’s now time to move on from that and here’s why:

1. Clients don’t really care about your logo. Let’s face it, do you care about another companies logo and want to see it all the time?
2. You don’t need your logo for branding during the presentation. If the audience cannot remember where you are from during your presentation you’ve got work to do and your logo wont fix it.
3. How excited are you to see Channel 7 put the Olympic logo up 12 months out from the Olympics – annoying isn’t it
4. More often than not, the logo will detract from pictures on the screen. The last thing you want is your logo standing out as something that doesn’t fit in.

Next time, Go Zen – less is more.

Cheers

Darren Fleming


Social Media Has Changed Us

Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter and other have changed the way that we communicate. Like it or not, we need to conform to get through.

This does not mean that you have to start tweeting, playing Mafia wars on Facebook or put your resume up on LinkedIn. It means that we have to reduce our message to it’s bear essentials so people will give us a chance. Twitter only allows 144 characters to get your message across. Today, a long messages that takes ages to to be delivered will be ignored, even if delivered face-to-face. People just have too much information that they are trying to sort through to wait around for you to get to the point.

Are your sales presentations getting to the point? Or do you use slides filled with bullet point after bullet point after bullet point?

%name%, communication has changed. Have you changed with it?


The Wedding Speech

Do you have to give a wedding speech and don’t know where to start? Or are you wondering what stories you have about the lucky couple you should include?

This free 15 minute audi0 interview was designed for you. Recorded on ABC (Australia) radio in July 2009, it has all the answers you need. Get great wedding speech tips here.


How to Give World Class Business Presentations

When you are speaking, you are selling.

You could be selling your latest widget to your next customer, your ideas to your staff, or selling yourself in your annual performance review. What ever it is, you are selling.

But the reality is the results that you achieve will be a direct result of how well you present your ideas, as opposed to how good your ideas are. The world is full of bad ideas that were sold correctly, while the good ideas die with their creator.

If you want to sell more products, if you want your staff to listen to you, or if you want to be able to get that pay rise, you need to be able to sell your ideas, and sell them well.

Recorded in front of a live audience, in this audio will give you the reasons why you need to:

  • Include stories in your next presentation
  • Control the room from the moment you enter it
  • Why you need to make your very first word interesting
  • Why PowerPoint fails more often than it succeeds…and

The one thing you must remember at the start of every presentation so your audience will listen to you

At just $15, this could just be the best investment you make in your next Business Presentation.

Get it now


The New Baby and You

Last week I was speaking with a new client and arranging some dates for coaching. I asked how his diary was for early June. He replied, ‘It’s full. My wife is expecting our first baby and I will be very busy. Can we look at a bit later down the track?’

Now being the proud Dad of the 2 most beautiful little girls in the world, I asked him if he knew what he was going to have. He nervously said he didn’t and was feeling anxious about it all. I assurred him, ‘Mark, you are in for the best ride of your life! It’s going to be a lot of hard work, but it will be the best journey that you can possible go on. I hope you have a little girl as they are the BEST presents a Dad can ever have!’

His response to that surprised me. He said that he was glad I had told him that as most people just said that his life as he knew it was going to end. He’d been told that in 20 years he might see some money again – if he could get the kid to move out! He’d been told that all his fun was going to end and was not sure if he really was ready for that. He’d heard this from a number of people.

Now we have all been guilty of spreading this sort of stereotype and generalisations – me included. But have you ever stopped to consider what the impact of this ‘standard response’ is on your audience? Do they fully understand your mindset and background when we pass this type of comment?

When we share our ideas, we do not always know where our audience is and what they are thinking. Potential fears and anxieties (all very natural just before a new baby arrives!) will shape how your message is heard and interpreted. Humour will often fall flat and be totally ignored!

Where possible, learn a little about what is important to your audience and frame your message so they will understand what you are saying. This will give you a greater chance of delivering your mesage in a way that your audience takes it on board and adopts it as their own.

I have not heard if the baby has arrived yet, but will let you know as soon as it comes along.

Cheers

Darren


Free Marketing in Todays Economy

With today’s economy in a constant state of flux, it is important to get the biggest bang for your buck – marketing bucks included. You have to spend your money wisely.

The good news is, that you can get a lot of high quality, well targeted and free marketing if you want it … and this is how you do it.

Each night, literally hundreds of professional associations have meetings. These events are generally networking events for the industry and they are well attended. At these meetings, there is some ‘general business’ that the members need to hear. After this, there is the guest speaker who is there to share their knowledge on a particular topic. These guest speakers have a captive audience for 30 minutes and can set themself up as THE exert. Would you like to be that expert?

Here is an example of how it works:

You are a lawyer wanting to generate business in the Energy sector (gas, electricity etc). First, you need to find the hottest topic that the sector should know about – in this case it would be the governments Carbon Trading system. Then find the industry association that the decision makers belong too. You then simply call the associations’ President and ask if their members would be interested in an information session explaining the implications of the new legislation. It really is that simple. As most professional associations need to have a focus on member education and development, you are ideal for their needs.

Now, on the night, you are not selling anything. Obviously the name of your firm would be mentioned, and you may have some information sheets for people to take away, but that is it. You do not stand up and say how good you and your firm are. If you do this, it will kill any potential for business that you could generate.

Instead, what you do is generate lots and lots of questions in your audiences’ mind so they will want to talk to you after your presentation. Once you are talking, you can ask for their number and follow them up over the next few days. It really is that easy.

What are the benefits of this approach?

The content should not be too hard for you to come up with; after all you are speaking about what you do for a living. You are speaking to a self-selected audience who want to hear you. And because you are standing in front of the room, you are automatically seen as the expert. This is what you want.

I guarantee that this approach will work for any professional who knows their target market. The only cost to you will be your time … and you may just get a free drink out of it!

Give it a go, and let me know how you get on.

Cheers

Darren

 


How Obama Wrote His Speech

By now you will have seen the speech from the leader who we hope will set a new path for the United States of Ameria.

Have you ever wondered how the speech is put together? Follow this link to find out. (You may need to log into facebook).

http://www.facebook.com/ext/share.php?sid=44345466733&h=bX9nX&u=WiA-7

Cheers

Darren

 


A Presentation is a Lot Like a Marriage…

A presentation is a lot like a marriage; you spend a lot of time setting up good intentions and preparing for what you will do; then when you get into it, you end up doing whatever you want.

 

Whilst this may not necessarily be true of marriages, it does highlight the power of the analogy – and that is why you are still reading.

 

Why do analogies work?

 

Analogies work because they draw on a well known topic (a marriage) to explain another (the difficulty of giving a speech). As we can all relate to failed intentions in a marriage (even if it is only a truism!) it highlights how we can have failed intentions in our presentation.

 

Analogies can be drawn between similar objects – ‘The human heart is like the fuel pump in a car”, or dissimilar concepts – “Pupils are more like oysters than sausages. The job of teaching is not to stuff them and then seal them up, but to help them open and reveal the riches within.”

 

The best analogies are those that draw on dissimilar objects to make a point. Using dissimilar objects creates dissonance in our thought patterns and causes us to think more thoroughly about what is being presented. This helps us remember the point. By showing that two dissimilar objects are closely related (marriage and presentations, students and oysters) you break the chain of thought in your audience and plant a new thought.

 

How can you use this today?

 

Consider how you can use analogies to more clearly explain your message. Will an analogy help clarify your point, make it more memorable and cause people to think about what you have said? If it does, then you will change the way your audience thinks, and to having the impact that you are after!

 

Cheers

Darren Fleming

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