4 Secrets for Hooking Your Audience’s Attention (and Keeping It!)

by Catherine Mattiske · 25 oct 2022 · 3 min read
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Your presentation should shout, “I hear you and know your needs. Here’s what will fulfill your need and/or solve your problem. Next, here’s how to execute the solution. Finally, here’s how you can mitigate potential issues.” Following the four-step structure, you’ve hooked everyone.
You’ve prepared your presentation. Your audience is in the room. Your topic is crucial, and you get one shot to ensure that everyone absorbs everything you have to impart! Unfortunately, most of us know that engaging your audience and keeping them engaged is challenging. We’ve all been the beneficiaries of an avalanche of data, text, slide overload, and images that become a blur when there’s just so much information to take in.

deciding on the complex balance of information to include is an art and a skill

How to communicate it can be overwhelming! The balance of omitting critical data versus over-informing and losing our connection with the audience is essential to get spot-on. According to a 2018 State of Attention Report conducted by Kelton Global, four out of five professionals said they shifted focus away from the presenter during their last presentation. That’s a demanding audience!

But, thankfully, it doesn’t have to be that way.I’ve determined that first, cracking the code to gain 100% of the audience’s attention requires understanding specific communication methods. Then, once we have that knowledge, we can know how individuals best receive information and process it to form meaning and understanding. Finally, we can focus on setting the audience up for success — so that they will be influenced by what you have to present.

One of the 12 Archetypes is “The Decrypter,” who has an eye for the more significant questions and is skilled at building connections through inquiry. By contrast, “The Narrator” connects to the world through a story and focuses on goals. Whether attempting to capture an audience of one, or many, knowing how to communicate to individuals skillfully requires mastery.Regardless of whether you have knowledge of all 12 Archetypes, here’s ...

how to engage the audience using four key steps

  1. Connection: Firstly, form a relationship with the audience by meeting them where they are. Pitch to the audience based on who they are, what they already know, and what you need them to know next.

  2. Detail: Then, be very precise with presentation details. No need for a data dump — you don’t want to overwhelm the audience. Think of Goldilocks and the Three Bears: not too much, not too little, but just right. The objective is to give them what they need but leave them wanting more for later.

  3. Construct: At this point, you decide something important: How do we execute these critical details? Your presentation should reflect the practicalities of moving forward: Here’s the plan, the timeline, or the action steps.

  4. Invent: Finally, pull out the critical thinker’s crystal ball to predict questions the audience might ask — and answer them before the audience does. What are the “what ifs” variables and possible roadblocks? Then provide all of the tips and tricks for managing those potential challenges.


Your presentation should shout, “I hear you and know your needs. Here’s what will fulfill your need and/or solve your problem. Next, here’s how to execute the solution. Finally, here’s how you can mitigate potential issues.”Following the four-step structure, you’ve hooked all 12 Inner Genius Archetypes meaning that everyone in the audience will feel that the presentation addressed how they like to communicate best. Success!

about catherine

Global business educator and author Catherine Mattiske is the founder of TPC - The Performance Company, a leading training and consulting organization that has worked with Fortune 100 companies worldwide. Established in 1994, TPC has offices in Sydney, Los Angeles, New York, London, Singapore, and Basel (Switzerland). The author of more than 30 books, her latest is "Unlock Inner Genius: Power Your Path to Extraordinary Success" (September 2021). Discover more about your Inner Genius at thegeniusquotient.com

original article published on medium

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