How to Adapt Your Presentation for a Virtual Event

An online presentation is not a boring presentation, if you follow these tips.

10 Tips for a Compelling Online Presentation

1. Choose an Appropriate Background

As a professional, the last thing you want to do is give your keynote speech in the bathroom.

You want to make sure that the background presents you as the professional that you are, you could even rent a boardroom if necessary.

Another great idea to get a desired background is a green screen. With a green screen you can customize the background to be as professional (or fun) as you want.

Pro Tip: Whatever background you choose make sure it is clear and not distracting. This will help the audience’s attention stay where it belongs, on YOU!  

2. Eliminate Distractions

The last thing you need during your speech is an unwelcome intrusion.

To ensure nothing will distract your audience during your speech, make sure all of your devices are turned off and that you're in a quiet and private area so someone won’t randomly show up unannounced.

3. Practice! Practice! Practice!

You know what they say, practice makes perfect!

If you want this thing to go off without a hitch, the best thing to do is practice beforehand, this ensures that you make as few mistakes as possible when it comes to the actual day.

One of the best ways to practice for a virtual presentation is to watch yourself on video. Keep an eye out for what works and what doesn’t. For example, do you have a nervous twitching habit that distracts the audience from what you’re saying?

You should also pay attention to things like weird filler words you use, whether or not you keep eye contact, what gestures work and which ones are too distracting, and where your energy is most compelling, or where it could ‘amp it up.’

4. Clearly Articulate Yourself

When you give a speech over video you lose nonverbal cues. 

As you decrease the number of non-verbal communication, you need to carefully choose your words to make sure your messages are communicated the way they were intended. 

This can be as simple as slowing down your speech to ensure every word is heard.

5. Have a Good Hook

Don’t let your audience slip away before they even have the chance to hear what you have to say! Grab their attention away with a great hook.

Presenting an exciting hook captivates your audience and grabs their attention so that they want to listen to hear the whole story.

Using a shocking statistic, a personal story, or starting with a question are all good examples of effective hooks you can try.

6. Connect to Your Audience

Be yourself and have fun!

Your audience will appreciate your authenticity and will be able to connect with your message on a personal level.

You can also ask your audience to participate. Those watching can submit a question or respond to a quick poll to help them interact with your speech.

7. Use Technology to Your Advantage

Avoid being a Boomer by testing out the tech in advance and troubleshoot the platform beforehand. This way you can be confident that you won’t run into glitches while your audience is watching.

Make sure your camera angle is perfect and not aimed halfway up your face.

Learn the software you’re using ahead of time by giving it a test run beforehand and be sure to test out the mic a couple of times so that you’re not accidentally muted for your entire presentation.

8. Dress Appropriately

For any presentation, be it online or in-person, you want to look the part.

When you dress appropriately not only does it have an effect on your audience, but it also has an affect on your own head-space.

When you dress the part you will feel more confident which will also help you feel more relaxed and comfortable when giving your presentation.

9. Use Compelling Visuals

To keep your audience engaged use visuals to level up your virtual presentation.

Adding visuals also help to break up a long keynote presentation which helps to maintain audience engagement.  

10. Be Engaging and Captivating

A virtual presentation requires heightened animation such as movement, gestures, and visuals to keep your audience’s attention.

Be sure to use body language and hand gestures to keep up the energy of your presentation.

You’ll also want to be standing up for things. The audience wants to see you moving around as it helps their attention.

How is a Virtual Keynote Different?

Watch this video to see how we adapted our keynote speaking for our virtual world.

Why You Should Book a Virtual Keynote

Now, given our current situation you might be asking yourself if a virtual keynote would have the same impact as it would on stage and the answer is, YES!

Although it’s not going to be the same as an in-person keynote, a virtual keynote event can still help you achieve your goal of inspiring your audience to change their way of thinking and develop their leadership skills.

Whether you’re a sales manager seeking to motivate your team, a teacher eager to inspire students to become leaders, or you’re an event planner seeking to provide your audience a memorable experience with lasting impact, keynotes are the most effective way to entertain and inspire your audience.

Explore our leadership development keynote topics here.

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