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A Guide for your Virtual Presentation

The webinar – Master the skill of virtual presentations– took place virtually on November 17. Nancy Duarte, Chief Executive Officer, and Patti Sanchez, Chief Strategy Officer from Duarte Inc, were the speakers of this presentation. The 45-minute conversation was focused on providing insights and tips for future events and how to boost your virtual presentation to its full potential.

This blog post will highlight the most important topics discussed in the webinar along with a small description in every section.

Presentation Format options:

The first step when building your virtual presentation is to decide what kind of structure you want to embrace. Before establishing one of the three possible structures, you should take into consideration your audience and estimate their attention span. Nancy and Patti recommend you begin your presentation with a technique to capture your audience. A few examples include a  personal or professional story, a quote, or anecdotes. With no further ado, let´s dive into the three virtual presentation types:

  • Linear Virtual Presentation – This can be considered a monolog from the presenter, where their opinion will be showcased without having audience engagement. Ideally, this presentation should not take longer than 15 to 20 minutes, to keep the audience’s interest.
  • Interactive Presentation – This format will have more impact on your audience and is a two-way dialog between the participants and the presenter. Usually, there is an open conversation with questions and comments from all attendees. This presentation should be around 30 minutes.
  • Collaborate Presentation – Considered as high degree interaction, this type is a process of co-creation from both sides. An appropriate example of this format is a workshop. Considering that the audience is collaborating and invested in the session, the duration can be longer than 45 minutes.

Types of Interactions

The different types of interactions relate to how your audience will respond to engagement and how interested they are in participating.

  • Simple (Checking the pulse) – This will be a low effort for both the presenter and the audience. Pools and Q&As are two possibilities for your to check your audience pulse.
  • Moderate (Gleaning deeper insights) – The moderate interaction will take more dedication and requires framing more specific content. Some techniques include having your participants draw graphics or write a small comment about the topic being discussed. 
  • Complex – This type will have you using all communication tools that are at your disposal. In your presentation, you can ask your participants to unmute themselves, turn their camera on, and have them discuss ideas in breakout rooms.

When deciding what type of interaction you want for your virtual presentation, it is essential to warm up your audience beforehand (small bites). You will not want to overwhelm your participants with too much engagement activities since they may not be ready and can lead to losing motivation in your session.

SPA Treatment

The SPA Treatment is focused on planning the slides for your presentation. This concept is divided into three sections:

  • Simplify (Cut the clutter) – Take off the unnecessary content. You should display one main idea that the audience needs to take from that slide. Try to have bullet points on your slide instead of a large text with information.
  • Plan (Reimage the Slide) – When planning your slide, you should support your content with graphics and images. Rearrange the information around that technique with purpose and creativity.
  • Accentuate – (Use design with purpose) – For your slide design, you should try to explore the different typographies, color pallets, and iconographies.

TriCast – Three Layers of Information

The TriCast emphasizes the three key aspects you need to consider for your virtual presentation:

  • Presenter – Considered the primary vehicle of visual contact. This means that the presenter needs to be prepared and well dressed. Presenting standing up is plus since you can speak more freely to your audience.
  • Graphics – The visuals should reinforce what the presenter is communicating to the audience.
  • Background – One of the common challenges nowadays is that presenters don´t have a lot of options when it comes to the background. One of the frequent solutions is using the green screen setup. However, the challenge with this method is that if it is not realistic, it can lead to dispersing your audience´s attention, and sometimes the participants can have less of a professional image of you. This way, you should choose a background that can broadcast a positive image and reinforce your idea at the same time. 

Setup of your presentation environment:

Finally, setting up your presentation environment can improve your virtual presentation significantly. In the picture below, you will see how you should prepare your space when presenting your virtual presentation.

The key factor is to speak directly to the camera, and to help you, Patti advises you to have images of your participants next to the camera to make your presentation as realistic as possible. Moreover, an extra-light, microphone, and a second display with your notes, can make your presentation even more successful.

With these suggestions, your virtual presentation can reach its full potential! You will surely impress your audience with how prepared and dedicated you were to your presentation!

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