How do you go beyond simply engaging your audience?

27th September 2021

Audience engagement. Trips off the tongue, doesn’t it? You engage your audiences in your presentations. Box ticked, job done. They’re with you to the end.


Yet do you? Are they? How do you deal with that moment when you realise eyes are sliding away, emails are being answered… Why should they pay attention to you for more than a fleeting moment?


How do you go beyond simply engaging your audience to compelling, haunting, even obsessing your audience to stay with you?


Let’s look at the first of these. Engage.


When we Engage, REALLY ENGAGE, we create an instant reaction where the brain says

“I really need to pay attention to this!”


It’s Primal. Instinctive. From deep in the part of the brain that drives the ‘fight or flight’ response.


It could be… bright colours! Or, if you dare, a flash of nudity!! (Used successfully in advertising, albeit I’m unsure if this would work for your business presentation…. (OK, go on, prove me wrong).




“Wow! What happened? What did I miss? I’d better pay attention!”


We can make a visual change. I find appearing on screen in a blond wig with sunglasses tends to engage the audience; it is certainly not what they were expecting…


A change from what your audience is expecting, will create a moment of shock, a moment of engagement.


So you’ve engaged with your audience. Which is where many presenters stop. Then stumble, fumbling around to regurgitate well-worn channels of information, not realising that giving information is way down the list of engagement activities.


How do you progress from “I’d better pay attention!” (Engaging) to “I really want to stay with this to the end!” (Compelling, Haunting, Obsessing)?


Tune in next episode (HINT: we’re beginning to explore compelling already) for the next steps or take a short cut by visiting to explore the Speak Performance virtual workshop….


Now you’ve gone beyond simply engaging your audience.


Ges Ray

+44(0)794 108 3722






Author, ‘Speak Performance’ –

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