Having delivered over one thousand presentations in all 50 states and 27 countries around the world as a keynote speaker I know the most important element is how to open a presentation!

Did you know that you only have 90 seconds to grab the audience’s attention when delivering a presentation or speech?

Of course, there are many ways you could open a presentation effectively. I’m going to share with you seven ways to open a speech or presentation based on your audience. You can choose which presentation opening works best for your next keynote speech, office presentation or TEDx talk.

1. Give a Statistic or State of Fact

When I asked the question do you know you only have 90 seconds to grab the audience’s attention when delivering a speech or presentation? This is a is a statistic and a statement of fact. Based on the audience you are presenting in front of you may want to do some research. A good source of information can be found on their industry from a trade or business journal. When you give them a statistic or a statement of fact it shows you did your homework!

2. Play Music

I like to use music with big audiences it gets them excited, motivated and the music I use rocks! The other reason I play music is it calms me down. I’m so excited to get on stage to share my leadership lessons and personal stories that make a difference in people’s lives. When I hear the music, it tends to relax me and slow me down while it has the opposite effect on the audience getting them ready for the show.

r Rick Goodman Speaking in Florida

3. Ask The Audience to Imagine

Make the audience part of the story by asking them to imagine that they’ve just created the business or life of their dreams. Now ask them how it would feel, what would it look like? When you ask an audience to imagine something you now put them into the story, they’re taking that story and they’re using it in their own head. It’s their story, it’s the movie in their head and their own way of seeing things. This increases audience engagement, application and retention of the information delivering a great ROI every time!

4. Compliment The Audience

When I deliver a keynote speech to health care providers many times, I will acknowledge the amazing job and sacrifices they have made. Everybody wants Love, Appreciation, and Respect. When we acknowledge the audience and how they make a difference your speech becomes all about them.

Opening a speech in Madison square

5. Open With a Famous Quote

If you are going to open with a famous quote make sure that you associate it with the topic and or content of your speech or presentation. It could be a quote from someone famous or maybe even something you have written or a grandparent or relative used to say. I like to use my own quote “People do business with people who they like who are like them”. This goes to the heart of relationship building which affects employee engagement and retention.

6. Share Topical or Historical News

Depending on where you’re speaking or presenting you can share some historical news about that area of the world you are visiting. You can also share today’s news and the events that are currently shaping our world.

Dr Rick Goodman speaking in Manilla

7. Ask the Audience a Rhetorical Question

By asking the audience a rhetorical question, meaning you already know in most cases what their answer will be. For example, the question may be “If I can help you grow your business, I will let you know and if not, I will let you know that also… Is that fair?” In this case I already know they will say that’s fair, and I am demonstrating to them that I will be transparent in my presentation and my interaction with them.

Now you have seven different options for opening your presentation or speech so plan wisely, because you have only 90 seconds to wow your audience before you lose them forever!

Contact Rick

Dr. Rick Goodman CSP is a thought leader in the world of leadership and is known as one of the most sought after motivational keynote speakers in the United States and internationally.

He is famous for helping organizations, corporations, and individuals with systems and strategies that produce increased profits and productivity without having the challenges of micromanaging the process. Some of Dr. Rick’s clients include AT&T, Boeing, Cavium Networks, Heineken, IBM, and Hewlett Packard.

For more information on Rick’s speaking programs, audio programs, and learning programs, contact (888) 267-6098 or Rick@rickgoodman.com, or visit www.rickgoodman.com.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This
Skip to content