Tips for adapting a winning presentation for distinct audiences

Your ‘big idea’ is a home run, but how can you turn that into a touchdown or a hole-in-one for a new batch of spectators? Follow these tips for tweaking and repurposing your core message.

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There’s something euphoric about nailing a talk.

When you end a presentation feeling certain your audience is on board with you, it’s as thrilling as hitting a grand slam in the ninth inning.

Crafting and delivering a winning talk can be exhilarating and empowering, but it can also be elusive and rare. Once you create a successful talk, you can rely on it again and again, though; just tailor it for each audience.

Keep these important tips in mind when you’re modifying a presentation for new eyes and ears:

1. Redo your audience analysis.

You have to move your listeners, stirring emotion in them and, in turn, generating empathy.

Multiple studies have shown that empathy results in “helping” behaviors—doing things that will benefit people around them (in this case, the things you urge your audience to do).

An analysis examines who your audience members are. Beyond the professional positions they hold, ask yourself: What are listeners’ fears, hopes, goals, hobbies and hesitations? How might they resist the ideas you present? What subjects might enthrall them?

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