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Presentations Skills
How to Connect with Your Audience

By Jim DeSena, CSP

  Have you ever bought something, saved a little money on your original purchase, but 
then spent more money later because the original purchase was a mistake? If you took 
a moment you could probably recall a purchase you've made like this. Most of us can. 
Some of us painfully so.

Do you do presentations? If you do, then you'll want to be sure to connect with your 
audience early on in that presentation. A good way to connect is to connect emotionally. 
The question that opened this article is an example of one way I connect with my 
audience during a sales presentation. The question is a powerful way to address a price objection. Just in case someone in the audience can't immediately recall their own 
example, I have my own vivid example to share of how I saved $35 and spent $7500.

There are four broad emotional categories: glad, sad, mad and scared. You can connect 
with any of the emotions, depending on the purpose of your presentation. For example, 
do you want people to feel inspired so they make a commitment? Do you want people 
to get concerned enough to take action? Asking a question, telling a personal story or 
relating a real-life humorous event are some of the ways you can connect with your 

When you're giving a presentation and you connect with your audience emotionally, 
you develop three benefits for yourself and your presentation.

1.  When you connect emotionally with your audience, they pay more attention because 
the information you're giving has meaning for them.

2.  It creates more credibility for what you're saying. The audience will have a personal experience they can relate to your presentation.

3.  They are providing their own story, so to speak, that illustrates your point. When 
you're presenting, one of the reasons you are presenting may be to help someone make 
an informed decision. Capturing the emotion from that person's experience will help you do that.   

Jim DeSena has given close to 1000 presentations. He is a Certified Speaking Professional, 
a designation which can only be earned by meeting the high standards of the National Speakers Association. For information on how Jim can customize a presentation for your group on sales, leadership or success, call 800-4321-WIN  (c)1999 Performance Achievement Systems, inc.

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