Considering that millennials—typically defined as anyone born between 1980 and 1995—make up the largest share of the American workforce, chances are you’ll be presenting to them quite a bit. But given that they’re the first generation to grow up with all of the world’s information (AKA the Internet) at their fingertips, you should take a thoughtful approach when it comes to capturing and keeping their attention.
Get Straight to the Point
We advise everyone to get straight to the point of their presentation, no matter to whom they’re presenting, but this advice is especially important for millennials. With social media, texts, and limitless websites vying for their attention at all times, you’re competing with a whole lot, so you want to be sure you hone in on your primary message as quickly and concisely as possible. As a general rule, the less you say about your topic while still getting your point across, the better.
Maximize With Mobile
Millennials are the first generation to grow up with cellphones. Not only did they grow up with them, but they essentially live on them. Rather than compete with their phone during your presentation, use it to your advantage. For instance, a mobile app like SlideKlowd, which lets your audience view your slides and respond in real-time, allows your audience to participate directly from their phone. Basically, anything that integrates the audience’s mobile device with your presentation is going to help you keep their attention.
Find the “Why” in Your Message
Millennials get a lot of flack for being lazy and entitled, but the truth is, they’re very mission-driven compared to other generations—they will work their asses off if the believe in the purpose behind doing it. Therefore, you should focus on the “why” of your message when presenting. Why does it matter? Why will it make the world a better place? Why will it make an impact? Millennials are drawn to a higher message, so honing in on it will take you far with this audience.
Wow With Your Visuals
The generation that grew up with the rise of technology is not one that’ll have tolerance for low-quality, low-tech visuals. If you want your millennial audience to be engaged, then you really have to be thoughtful and creative with your visual designs. Throw any generic clip art or slides featuring lengthy blocks of text out the window and focus on simple, compelling graphics that paint the picture of what you’re trying to say. If you’re not sure what fonts, colors, and designs to use for maximum impact, then check out our presentation design services so we can take care of it for you.
Be Authentic and Vulnerable
Millennials grew up in an age when everyone is exposing themselves like never before. Thanks to social media, we know when people break up, we know what they ate for lunch, we know what they’re angry, sad, or happy about, etc. etc. In other words, millennials have come to expect a certain level of vulnerability and authenticity, and they’re quick to spot a fake. With this audience more than most, you want to make sure you’re being as real and authentic as possible. Don’t be afraid to crack a bad joke or tell a vulnerable story—these things will take you far with this audience.
Looking for more audience tips and tricks? Then check out our Catapult Training, designed to take your presentation to the next level.
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