9 Tips to deliver a perfect presentation

You only get one chance to make a first impression. Even with a superb PowerPoint deck, a presenter that seems disorganised or looks at notes rather than the audience can lose the crowd in an instant.

The next time you present, take a look at these tips to deliver your presentation like the consummate professional you are.

  1. Know your audience

It sounds obvious, but it makes a difference. Are you talking to a room of students or professionals? Whoever is in that room, needs the talk to be tailored to them. Once you’re speaking their language, literally, you’ll keep them engaged.

  1. Keep it simple

Don’t overcomplicate things. Find that fine line, explaining but not overloading. It’s easy to forget when you have knowledge on a topic that other people don’t know what you know. Make people feel that they’re clever and they want to learn more.

  1. Connection over content

Find that emotional sweet spot. Doling out facts and figures won’t keep your audience engaged, but a story about how those figures affect the life of a person is what the audience will remember.

  1. Be yourself

Your passion and interest for the topic will inspire people, if you’re enthusiastic your audience will feel it.

  1. Mix it up

Use jokes to break down barriers, make fun of yourself, tell anecdotes. Stories work really well especially when they’re personal and relevant to the topic.

  1. Switch media

Use slides, video, audio, handouts, take a poll, keep your audience moving. Keep the energy up!

  1. Rehearse, rehearse, rehearse

Know your presentation well, be prepared. Do many run-throughs, preferably in the space you’ll be talking in, so you can feel comfortable.

  1. Questions

Make sure you leave time for questions at the end, give the audience a chance to really engage.

  1. Bring it home

Leave the audience with a resounding thought and a call to action.


There are some more great tips on public speaking from the Ted Talk masters.