You have 5 minutes to capture and keep your audience’s attention

5 minutes… that’s all you get.

The moment you get on stage, your audience gives you 5 minutes to capture and keep their attention.

If you don’t, they’ll tune you out and it won’t matter how important your message is. It will not be heard. So you need a strategy.

Young leader, in order to capture and keep your audience’s attention, you need to come in with a strategy.

Note: I said strategy, not gimmick! These are two completely different things!

Here’s a 3-part strategy that you can use the next time you stand in front of an audience to capture and keep their attention.

1. Get them to interact with you as soon as possible

Get them to raise their hand. Ask them to greet their seatmate. Ask questions… even rhetorical ones.

Make your audience feel that you genuinely want to engage with them. Acknowledge them by encouraging their participation.

A message should be a dialogue between you and your audience. It’s not supposed to be a presentation or performance where your audience are merely spectators.

Young leader, if you want to capture and keep your audience’s attention, get them to interact with you as soon as possible.

2. Be conversational

People want to hear a message, not a presentation.

They want to see your personality shine through in the way you speak. They want to feel that you’re talking to them, not at them.

Imagine Martin Luther King’s I Have A Dream spoken to you by a robot. Same message but completely different experience! That’s because people want to hear from people. But too many speakers talk like robots!

If you want to capture and keep your audience’s attention, be conversational.

3. Make them laugh… or try to

Humor is the most effective way to capture and keep your audience’s attention.

“But I’m not funny!”

It’s not about being funny! Okay… maybe it is, BUT… A lot of speakers aren’t comedians. And yet, they’re able to get their audience to laugh. That’s because they don’t take themselves too seriously.

But a word of caution: When you’re unsure, ditch the attempt at humor. No humor is better than bad humor… unless your bad humor is actually good humor.

Young leader, to capture and keep your audience’s attention, get them to laugh.

Here’s the gist:

You only have 5 minutes to capture and keep our audience’s attention.

If you want to communicate effectively, you need to have a solid strategy to do this.

Here are 3 ways:

  1. Get them to interact with you as soon as possible
  2. Be conversational
  3. Make them laugh

Incorporate these 3 things into the first 5 minutes of your talk and you will avoid losing your audience’s attention (at least for the first few minutes). You’ll be able to communicate your message to a captivated audience. And you will communicate better.

Do you know anyone who needs to read this? Share it with them!

Photo by Buenosia Carol from Pexels


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