Who are professional presenters, and what sets them apart? Part I


This article delves into the world of professional presenters, exploring the statistics, challenges, and growing need for skilled individuals who can captivate audiences and deliver impactful presentations. 


Presentations are invaluable tools for business and education, but are they merely that? It is widely believed that online sellers, managers, professors, startup leaders, coaches, politicians, and practically anyone in today’s world should be able to create and deliver an engaging online presentation (unless specified otherwise, when we mention ‘presentation,’ we refer to ‘online presentations and/or webinars). This perspective is hard to dispute, as it is a skill within reach. 


But does this automatically make someone a professional presenter? Is there a genuine need for professionals in this field?


Let’s turn to statistics to shed light on the subject:


  • $30 billion is spent annually on producing and delivering online presentations.
  • The average cost of creating and organizing an online presentation ranges from $500 to $2,000.
  • 47% of presenters dedicate eight or more hours to crafting a single presentation.
  • 79% of presenters invest a minimum of one hour rehearsing each presentation, with 22% devoting five hours or more.
  • Presenters create and deliver four monthly presentations, totaling approximately 40 hours of work.


At first glance, these figures suggest there is no need for a dedicated profession of presenters. After all, 40 hours a month falls short of a full workload. It appears that anyone requiring a presentation can handle the task intermittently.


However, there’s more to this story.


Flawed by design?


79% of attendees find most presentations utterly boring, and to make matters worse, studies reveal that viewers forget 50% of the information they receive within a week. 


Why does this happen? Well, there are numerous arguments to consider. The list goes on, from monotonous voices and formulaic content delivery to lackluster visuals, poor feedback, and a lack of interactivity. If we sum it up in one sentence, it’s safe to say that most presentations are simply poorly executed. They’re endured with the same level of interest as reading textbooks: necessary but painfully dull.


And speaking of textbooks, it’s no coincidence that we bring them up: a significant portion of presentations worldwide is created for academic purposes, primarily by students. During our studies, we first encounter presentations and learn the basics of crafting them.


But therein lies a major problem. In the academic realm, the focus is typically on the completeness and accuracy of the material rather than the delivery’s captivation and creativity. Whether it’s a school lesson, university seminar, or scientific conference, the fascination factor takes a back seat. However, this academic approach doesn’t translate well to commercial presentations, which are crafted to sell ideas, products, or services. 


Relying on the skills developed in academia can be counterproductive. It leads to presentations prioritising information accuracy, following the motto “Just state the facts.” This mindset turns out to be amateurish and wholly unsuitable for serious, professional work.


What does the audience crave?


Clearly, a professional presentation must captivate the audience’s attention. That’s the key to achieving its objectives: effectively generating leads and promoting ideas, products, and services.


But what do the statistics reveal about the essential elements of a presentation?


  • 62% of viewers crave engaging and original visual content beyond the ordinary.
  • 92% expect interactive experiences during online events, longing for active participation in the presentation process.
  • 68% believe that interactive presentation materials are more memorable, leaving a lasting impact.
  • 80% of information conveyed through illustrations like slides, GIFs, or videos remains embedded in viewers’ memories.
  • When information is presented as a captivating and coherent story, online presentation attendees are 22 times more likely to remember it. Astonishingly, 63% can recall the stories told to them, while only 5% retain standalone figures and statistics.


Summing up viewers’ desires in one sentence: online presentations should be fascinating, with compelling visuals and original storytelling. Additionally, audiences should have the opportunity to engage throughout the experience actively.


Now, let’s delve into presenters’ practices and where they channel their skills:


  • 61% dedicate more time to crafting presentation content rather than honing the design aspect.
  • Surprisingly (and sadly), 75% resort to using the exact solutions, templates, and even slide sets across different presentations.
  • 41% struggle with mastering impactful visual effects.
  • Another 45% find it challenging to unleash their creativity and produce original presentation designs.
  • 6% take on the Herculean task of developing presentation materials independently without seeking the assistance of other specialists.
  • 5% outsource presentation design to skilled professionals. 


This stark reality highlights a profound disparity in audience expectations. A significant number of presenters are not aligned with the desires and needs of their viewers. 


Are presentations doomed, then? 


The end of the first part.


Source ROI4Presenter Blog

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