How can you become a great virtual event speaker and keep your audience engaged?
While virtual events have been around for quite some time, they have quickly become the go-to in this hybrid/remote work environment we continue to live in. Speaking at a virtual event and speaking on a live event stage are very different. Even seasoned speakers have had to completely rethink their approach to engaging audiences and delivering memorable virtual experiences.
To connect with your audience in meaningful ways consider these 5 best practices:
Set-Up & Lighting
Setting yourself up for success starts with your workspace. Choose a space where you won’t be distracted. Lighting is crucial. Adjust your lighting and try out different angles to see which light setting will make you look your best. Light your face evenly from the front, sides, and above and avoid strong shade being cast on your face.
Make a One-on-One Connection With Your Camera
Think about how your body language translates in a virtual space. Take time to position yourself properly, ensuring that your head, neck, and shoulders are completely visible, and you are squarely facing the camera.
It’s difficult to make a one-to-one connection with everyone in your virtual audience so make the one-to-one connection with your camera. Imagine you’re speaking to a single person who’s on the other side of the screen, that way every person in the audience will feel like you are specifically speaking to them.
Engage Your Audience
Studies show that after 10 minutes of listening to a speaker, audiences struggle to maintain focus. Knowing your audience will help deliver value and should be key to your presentation. Power point slides should be pleasing to the eye, without a lot of words. The slide shouldn’t tell the story rather cue you to tell the story around the picture or word on the slide. Variety can help regain focus. Mix up your media by showing a short video clip or launch poll questions. These changes can go a long way to communicating that you are here to help the audience learn more about your topic.
Breakouts Can Increase Engagement
Short presentations can pack a punch and use breakout groups when you can. When your presentation concludes provide the audience with some questions to consider and they can discuss those questions in small groups for about 15 minutes. Assign a breakout room “champion” to help facilitate the conversation and that champion can let everyone know what was discussed when you bring everyone back into the main room.
Practice Makes Perfect
Run through your presentation as if you were live. Read it out loud and use BOLD in your script for key words or thoughts you want to emphasize. Time it out, see how long or short your presentation is to ensure you make the most of your time as a speaker and your audience gets the most value during your time on the virtual stage.
To learn more about how Jugo’s virtual event offering can help you to address the shifting virtual world, check out some more of our insights below.Back to resources