When you are asked to deliver a keynote presentation, the odds are that you were asked because you are an expert in that field or on a specific topic. The problem is, being an expert doesn’t always automatically prepare you to deliver a great keynote presentation.
Early on in my presenting career, I created every keynote from scratch and every outline looked different from the next. As I prepared for each presentation I found myself frustrated thinking that there had to be a better way than reinventing the wheel every time. I set out to find a framework that I could apply to each presentation I delivered. Through trial and error and with the help of trusted and capable advisors, I was able to discover a framework that is both easy to use and effective for all types of content, and delivery styles.
The framework is a simple 6 step process and when used effectively will help take the guess work out of your keynote presentation and free you up to be the expert that you are.
This is the part of your presentation where you break down the walls between you and your audience. This is a great opportunity to use a story or show a visual that helps to humanize you. Don’t skimp in this section! Your audience will decide in the first few minutes whether they are going to engage with the rest of your presentation so take you introduction seriously.
The common ground is the point in your presentation where you bridge the gap between you and your audience. This section should be a single statement that helps your audience understand that even if they came in thinking the information you are about to share does not apply to them, it does.
This is the part of your presentation where you create tension and give your audience something to think about. Audiences love tension, it helps them understand why the information that you have to share is important. Great presenters use a problem or a troubling statistic to build tension and hook their audience.
Much like the common ground, this is a single statement that shows your audience the consequence that will happen if they do not listen and act on the information they are about to hear. The point of this is to make the tension come to life as your audience begins to understand what’s at stake.
Information & Application
This will be the meat of your presentation. In this section you will share the solution to the tension and consequence that you have just proposed. You will use data, research, and stories to add validity to your content. Then you will turn the corner into application. Be sure to give clear steps as to how your audience can apply everything they have just heard.
The final piece of this framework is the landing. During the landing you will recap and wrap up everything you have shared up until this point. I make it a point to have a singular statement that encompasses everything I shared and use that to leave my audience intrigued about learning more. I close the keynote presentation with how the audience can find out more information or take next steps and I thank them for their time.
A great framework can make the daunting task of writing a keynote presentation so much easier and less stressful. With this simple 6 step process you can become not just an expert at your content but an expert in your delivery.
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