How to be a Rockstar Presenter: Lessons from Live Performances
Presenting can be intimidating, even for the most experienced and confident speakers. However, there are valuable lessons one can learn from live concerts and performances by rockstars. In this article, we will explore some of the strategies used by rockstars and how they can be applied to make your presentations more engaging, memorable, and impactful.
Make First Contact with Emotions
One of the key elements of a rock concert is how it connects with the audience’s emotions. Before the band even sets foot on stage, the lighting, sound, and atmosphere of the concert hall create an excitement that builds anticipation. As speakers, it is important to start making contact with emotions as early as possible. The Heath brothers’ book, MADE TO STICK, emphasizes the importance of connecting with the audience at a human level. This means finding the best way to relate your topic to the people sitting in front of you. Regardless of the subject matter, there is always a way to make it relevant and impactful for the audience.
When a band has been around for a while, they know what their fans want. They have their hits and favorites that people just can’t get enough of. Similarly, when presenting, it is important to lead with the ‘good stuff.’ Start with the most interesting and important points that connect with the audience, and then build on that foundation. As humans, we love feeling included and part of the action. By keeping the audience in the loop, they feel like participants and not just passive listeners.
Kick Over the Podium
In rock concerts, the best moments happen when the band breaks the fourth wall and interacts with the audience. Whether it’s a singer jumping off the stage to high-five fans or a guitarist playing a solo surrounded by screaming fans, these moments create an electric connection and make the concert unforgettable. Similarly, as presenters, it is fundamental to get out from behind the podium. Move around and make eye contact with your audience. By physically engaging with the audience, you create a more memorable and interactive experience.
Wave Those Lighters
Audience participation is another essential component of a great rock concert. Whether it’s singing along to a chorus or holding up lighters in a slow song, the connection between the audience and the band builds momentum. In presentations, audience participation is also crucial. Instead of relying on simple show-of-hands questions, try creative and interactive methods. For instance, presenters can print out slides with numbers on the back, and then ask the audience to hold up the number corresponding to the follow-up question. This method creates an interactive and entertaining experience, keeping the audience engaged.
Go Home Singing
After every successful concert, people leave the concert hall humming their favorite songs. They’ve had a memorable experience, and the music has stuck with them. This merchandising of the concert is critical for building a fan base and enhancing the reputation of the band. Likewise, as presenters, it is essential to create memorable presentations that leave the audience with a lasting impact. Find a striking visual or an emotionally charged moment that will stick with your audience after the presentation, and that they will share with others.
You’re the Rockstar
Ultimately, being a rockstar presenter requires creativity, imagination, and the willingness to break free from the traditional and familiar methods of presenting. By taking inspiration from live performances and rock concerts, you can build a connection with your audience, create an interactive and exciting experience, and leave a lasting impression. As a presenter, remember that you are the rockstar, and your audience is your crowd. So go out there and rock the stage!