An important goal for the presentation of every service or product should be to involve the audience. Audience interaction has been shown to be a key ingredient in creating acceptance of every presentation.
With the audience participating in the presentation, the speaker will not only become more engaging but will create a bond with the audience.
In this way, the audience is much more likely to want the service or product being presented.
How Does Technology Help?
Every presentation should be to interact with the target audience. When properly done, the audience, becoming involved is much more likely to carry away a positive acceptance of the service or product the speaker is marketing.
Technology continues its progress into new and better ways to improve techniques for the way speakers engage their audiences.
Today’s tech offers a better understanding of the importance of audience interaction, but with innovative technology that can aid the speaker to engage the audience.
Modern technology has created major changes in ways that everyone must understand and utilize.
Brick and mortar shops have been suffering from a lack of sales that have gone to the Internet. Most today have websites in the hope of capturing or recapturing customers who prefer to remain in the home while shopping.
Tech offers a number of new ways that may be helpful in achieving the goal of reaching the target audience.
Apps advertising an event may enable the presenter to connect with the target through social media.
This can be extremely helpful. Videos may be uploaded onto the Internet. Using techniques such as questions and answers and/or using a poll, all these may help create a bond with the viewer and fill up the hall during the actual presentation.
Being Engaging Is Important
Before discussing some of the different techniques one may use during today’s presentations along with helpful tools, one should ask an important question. ‘Is my presentation outdated?’
Just as styles in clothing change, styles in modern presentations change as well.
Usually, in the past, a speaker merely talks about a product or service, explaining its use and reasons why the audience should use it.
Today, however, with new techniques in mind, here below are three techniques that can be most helpful in creating a bond between the speaker and the audience.
It is important that the audience have an experience it can have only by being in the hall with the speaker.
When Franklin D. Roosevelt became president of the United States, he initiated what he called Fireside Chats.
Although there was no television, audiences listened to their radios. On a regular basis, President Roosevelt and his little dog, Fala, supposedly sat in a comfortable chair before a warm fireplace and chatted with his audience about some of the activities in the Capital, along with perhaps reading and responding to letters.
Although the audience had no television at the time, they sat before their radios and allowed their imagination to see the president and his pet sitting before a fireplace and speaking in such a way that the audience felt they were in the same room.
You too, as a speaker, can have your own fireside chat. A fireside chat is a comfortable way to connect with a target audience.
Often this can be an informal chat between the presenter and a guest.
It can be something in the way of an interview. If presented in a relaxed atmosphere, the speaker is much more likely to engage the audience.
Before the chat, the speaker should consider the key elements of the presentation. This should be organized so that through the use of an interview an expectation may be to enhance audience participation.
This being done, the next Sept would be to discuss the presentation with the guest before the interview.
Then a natural interaction in a relaxed atmosphere can have surprising and satisfactory results. From the very start of the chat, one may involve the audience. The speaker should make the audience aware that questions or comments are welcome.
Keeping the audience engaged and interested in this way combined with eye contact when possible will make the audience really feel a part of the conversation.
In this more informal relaxed chat, the speaker and guest may share information in a more spontaneous manner than in an old-fashioned presentation where the speaker used a memorized speech without regard for the actual interests of the audience.
What is “Unconference”?
Unlike conferences of the past, today’s tech has created a new way of connecting and even given it a name. This is called the ‘unconference’.
The unconference is unlike the traditional conference in that it is operated by participants rather than speakers or hosts.
Some of the ways to conduct an unconference would be first to do an introduction in which the speaker presents the principal aspects and ideas to the audience. This would be followed up by explaining to the audience just how the session will function.
A group discussion is an important element. A group discussion would begin by having a member of the audience mentioned a particular topic or aspect of the presentation that most interests the guest. In this way, other members of the audience will feel free to participate.
They may offer new ideas or simply add to the original idea mentioned by the first guest. It is possible at times to form groups among the audience.
In this manner the speaker may inform the audience when a member hears a question to which they have the correct answer, they should speak up.
Then the members of the audience may break up into small groups with the goal being to gain more knowledge and understanding.
One discussion can lead to another, each offering advice that is not only practical but the key to unlocking ever more insight.
The speaker would, of course, invite the audience to share insights into what has been learned, and what would be the next steps to take with the aim being to further explore the possibilities of the topic.
In a presentation that can be referred to as ‘question driven’, we take a step away from a speaker a traditional ‘lecturer’ who recites a sales pitch prepared by the employer.
Using this method, the audience rather than the speaker who is in charge of the presentation by telling the speaker exactly what their needs may be and asks what they are going to take away from the is the presentation.
What Are The Presentation Styles?
There are two forms the presentation may take.
An introduction might be made to introduce the principal points, ideas, and the desired outcome as well as an explanation of just how the session may be formed/
This method is to allow audience members to ask questions not only during their presence in the hall but they may ask the questions online in advance of the actual meeting.
It may be helpful to have the audience form natural groups to ask and answer questions. To help initiate audience and group involvement, the speaker may make the following suggestion.
Any audience member who has the answer to a question, it should be made available to the group. The more natural the breakup into groups, the better.
After each group has discussed the topic, you as moderator with the ability to answer questions that may arise.
While perhaps different groups are having their discussions, the host may teach smaller groups as well. These are ideas and experiences the host will have gained to reach this particular standard of expertise.
In this way, the host may, instead of addressing a large audience, one may achieve a warmer reception when speaking as a member of a smaller group offering key insight and advice that every member may find helpful.
Presentations May Be Driven By Questions
In the past, when one thinks of a presentation, it is expected that the speaker will stand before a lectern laying out a presentation to an audience. For decades, this has been the standard for conferences.
But now this has changed. Through tech today, it is the members of the audience who determine the way a conference should go. This method completely does an about-turn from traditional presentations.
This method may take two different forms.
Audience members may be permitted to ask questions while they are present in the hall, or they may ask the questions in advance through the medium of an online Q&A comment box.
Many hosts find that garnering questions in advance offers a more effective way for them to connect with the target audience since they are able to have prepared answers to these questions before stepping onto the podium.
Another way for the target audience to ask questions would be through online forums, email, social media such as Facebook, and online polls.
Following this method, the speaker will be prepared in advance to interact with the audience and be quite ready and familiar with the answers to the questions that have already been asked.
For many speakers, appearing with the necessary confidence to speak before a large audience is understandably very difficult.
Many actors and others who have to appear on the stage or before any large audience find themselves nervous wrecks backstage and some actually have to be pushed out, but once on stage, with their attention turned to what has to be said or done, the adrenalin flows and they become not only inwardly calm but energized and they become quite capable of following through with whatever their audience expects of them.
Doing Audience Engagement Using Technology
If gathering questions in advance is not possible, there are apps available online. SpotMe is the only one that permits audiences to ask questions while the presentation is in progress. This may be done anonymously or openly. This works quite well for those who are shy about public speaking.
Another positive method for getting a message across is to form panels with interactive tech for target audiences.
One way is to poll known cellphones. This may be in the form of an audible message for them to hear on their smartphones. This has been proven to be an effective way to interact with target audiences and really be a success story.
There are several interactive panel tech tools.
In the event that the target audience may not have personal phones or other devices that may enable it to hear the speaker’s message, it is quite possible for the cost to rent or purchase hardware that permits interaction between the speaker and the audience.
Some of these firms that provide such equipment are Reply Systems, Turning Technologies, and CLIKAPAD.
Use Social Media
Social media can be a wonderful mine for arousing interest in the speakers’ agenda. One can very quickly create interaction on such sites as well as have the ability to track the feelings about the product being presented.
Such programs as Twitter are easy, cost nothing and all the speaker has to do is use a hashtag and any information desired. One may also project the results by using Twitterfall.
Many apps, text and web-based programs depend upon having member audiences use their devices. There are far too many apps available to the presenter. Some of those with the highest rating are Poll Everywhere, Glisser, and Sli.do.
Today, many available apps for conferences with which it is possible to poll, to have Q&A functions as well. Some of these are Lanyon, DoubleDutch as well as Quickmobile. It is only necessary to ask the event planner which app tool may be available for the presentation.
A very important point to remember is to keep the audience interested and engages before as well as during the presentation. When one sees yawning or leaving, it must be clear that something is wrong with the presentation.
Steps To The Presentation
Therefore, one should plan the presentation in three steps.
1. It will be before the presentation.
2. During the presentation, and
3. After the presentation.
Each of these steps must be integrated into the presentation as a whole with equal attention paid to each.
Another helpful tool is when beginning a presentation, the speaker should learn as much as possible about the audience.
By analyzing the target audience the speaker will probably find more creating ways of establishing a rapport, engaging with the audience, as if making them a part of the team. A number of ways to research the target audience.
For example, if asked to speak at a conference, the first thing one should ask the organizer about such details as the expected age of the audience, the educational background and demographics. It is helpful to understand the experience of the audience.
In this way, the speaker may create a close relationship with the visitors and with a full understanding of their needs in mind, one may tailor the presentation well in advance.
One may send out a poll to find out what the visitors know, what they need, and their reason for attending. There are at least twenty-one apps that may be helpful with each step in this research.
Using Technology During The Presentation
Technology can also be handy during the presentation. It is important to keep the audience engaged. For example, one might choose to use live polls.
Polls help to measure the understanding of audience members but is frequently quite helpful in keeping the audience entertained.
MIMS Clinical Update Conference in London recently was made aware of a grand way to use polls with regard to engaging the audience with the content being presented.
In this case, the audience was shown photos of patients with illnesses and asked members of the audience to participate in suggesting treatments.
After this, the speaker analyzed the suggestion and was then able to discuss the pros and cons with the audience.
Once the event has come to a close, that doesn’t mean that the interaction with the audience should be over and forgotten.
How To Engage Your Audience In Your Target Market Online?
Here are six different ways in which one may keep an audience engaged online long after having listened to a live presentation in a hall.
- A thank-you note was sent out to all those who attended the event along with a request for comments.
- If possible, share photos taken at the event. Many persons collect and keep photos.
- It may be possible to create a short video showing the highlights of the event and share it with the participating audience. These can be uploaded onto such sites as YouTube and others. Most persons today have access to several channels that connect them with others.
- Use SpeakerHub’s Shared Folders. These are to be found under ‘My account’. This may help to share content with more audiences and generate new possibilities.
- One may share slides on SlideShare and then the link may be emailed to the target audience. They too may choose to share this content with others thus creating even more leads.
- Whenever possible, collect testimonials. It is quite important to collect and save every testimonial. They can be displayed on the presenter’s website or on Facebook, Twitter, and other sites. These testimonials may prove quite useful in establishing trust and confidence in the presenter.
Finally, one should collaborate on the content of each presentation. An event may be comprised of important journalists, social media mavens as well as bloggers, etc. One may offer them bits of expertise, as well as draw upon them for some of their ideas and expertise.
In this way, it is possible to engage the audience in a new way, one that can expose you to ever-new audiences and more speaking engagements.
Every speaker, of course, must find the techniques that work best for connecting with the target audience, not only on stage but off stage as well.
Often mingling with the audience during breaks or after the presentation will bring the best results of all.
Today, using technology to reach an audience and then following some of the suggestions given here, one may quickly find more success in each endeavour.
Singapore is now one of the most vibrant cities/states on the entire globe. Every imaginable industry and business thrives in this spotlessly clean city.
The proper presentation to audiences here can be not only fruitful and satisfying but the presenter may quickly find new and better audiences eager to learn about services or products that will better enhance their lives and businesses
Expert Tips On How to Increase Customer Participation and Engagement
Now that you know how to engage with customers in the areas that you service, let us proceed and look at tips on how to increase customer participation and engagement. Note that audience participation is broad and so it’s imperative to work on ways of boosting how customers engage with your brand. Here are six tips on how to achieve this objective.
What is Customer Engagement?
Most digital marketing experts use customer engagement and customer participation interchangeably.
However, there is a difference between the two that you should keep in mind when crafting digital marketing campaigns.
Concisely, customer engagement refers to the different ways that you interact with the target customers both offline and online.
Even though most lead generation campaigns focus on online marketing, offline marketing platforms are still feasible. The interactions have to be positive to encourage the customers to take the desired action.
If negative the customers will eventually ditch your brand for the competitors who have better processes and offers.
Now let us shift gears and look at the different ways to increase customer engagement and participation.
Focus on Creating Stellar Customer Experiences
Customer experience is one of the pillars of customer experience. Companies with robust ways of endearing their businesses to the target customers record an 84% increase in revenue compared to companies that pay little or no attention to their customers.
Needless to say, customers are less likely to buy a product or service from a company that offers a poor customer shopping experience.
The experience doesn’t have to be complicated. A simple aspect such as keeping customers waiting for minutes before they can speak to a support team representative or a transaction not going through after inputting all the required information is enough to chase customers to your competitors.
Hence, in your quest to increase customer participation and engagement, make sure that you deliver the best customer experience to not only new customers but also existing customers.
Remember that word of mouth is one of the most powerful ways marketing strategies even in the current fast-paced digital world of business.
Map out the different ways that your interaction with your customers via platforms such as social media, email, brick-and-mortar business premises, and support centres.
Regularly monitor each platform to know which areas you should improve on to get ahead of the curve.
Leverage Push Notifications
Assuming that customers remember what you offer could be one of the reasons why you are recording low sales. When venturing into a new target market, it’s imperative to remind prospects of the products and services that you offer.
One sure way of achieving this goal is by using push notifications. With most people using mobile devices to not only communicate but also shop online, push notifications will keep your brand name and offers in the minds of the target customers.
Use them to remind them about important events such as special offers, news and events that matter to them.
To avoid painting a negative image of your brand, your website needs to have a form that customers use to subscribe to get notifications via mobile.
The form should also give them a chance to opt-out if they deem the notifications unnecessary or no longer require the service or product. That way, you won’t ruin your reputation by bombarding them with multiple notifications.
Set up a push notification schedule to connect with the target customers at the right time. More importantly, make sure that the message you send out is compelling and succinct to motivate the recipient to take the desired action.
Carry out extensive research to understand the target audience as well as A/B tests to know which messages best trigger the customers to visit your website and take the desired action.
It’s important to make sure that the message in the notification resonates with the customers.
Here in the United States, mobile applications users get an average of 46 notifications per day. 32% of the app users are likely to disable them if they receive more than 5 notifications per week.
One of the surest ways of reducing the number of customers who disable your notifications is by segmenting the target market. Use factors such as age, social class, shopping cycles, needs, and location to subdivide your market into different groups.
That way, you will be able to send out messages that match each group’s needs and expectations.
Create Ways of Making Your Brand Meaningful and Relatable
In the past, we have extensively discussed the need for ways of making your brand relevant to the target customers. In the context of increasing customer engagement and participation, it’s imperative to create ways of making your brand more relatable and meaningful.
Unknown to most people is that engaging with customers doesn’t only mean making the user experience efficient and smooth.
It also entails crafting a brand personality that the target customers will relate with, engage and love.
That’s where brand awareness comes in; the target customers need to know that the brand exists and has a product or service that has the potential of meeting their needs or resolving their problems.
Therefore, come up with ways of creating a brand that is relatable and connects directly with the target customers to win their attention.
Once you win their attention, you will get countless opportunities to engage with them and convince them that your brand is the best in the market.
Identify ways of winning their trust and making your authentic character stand out from the crowd to get ahead of the curve.
That way, customers in the new markets will quickly learn about the brand, relate to it, and engage with it.
Create Ways Of Retaining Customers
Any reputable digital marketer or online business owner can attest to the fact that getting new customers is more expensive than retaining existing ones.
This is based on the fact that existing customers already consider the brand authority and so they are more likely to refer the brand to other potential customers.
More importantly, they spend money on your products and services more often than newly acquired customers.
In the cutthroat digital marketing sphere, customers will only shop on a website with multiple tips if the shopping experience is good and memorable.
Consistently offering reliable, positive and fruitful interactions with customers will enable you to satisfy and engage with customers more effectively.
In a nutshell, customers engage with brands repeatedly if the service or product offered amicably meets their expectations and needs. Also, they gravitate towards brands that appreciate them and offer customised services.
To sum it up, it’s impossible to discuss customer engagement without considering customer retention. The two go hand in hand, you cannot have customer retention without ways of engaging with customers and vice versa is true.
So, create superb ways of making sure that your customers are satisfied throughout the entire cycle to retain your brand’s profitability and sustainability.
Revamp Your Social Media Marketing Campaigns
Already, there are more than 4 billion active social media users in the world.
Social media platforms are digital marketing powerhouses that you cannot afford to ignore. Every digital marketer today knows the need for one or more social media marketing campaigns.
Most of the customers you target are active social media users. Therefore, the best way to engage with them is by creating robust social media marketing campaigns that connect with them at a personal level.
Other brands are also using different social media platforms such as Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for brand awareness and to generate sales.
So, it’s imperative to do extensive market research to get a clear perspective of your target audience.
The information you gather will enable you to create laser focussed social media marketing campaigns.
How Do I Engage With Customers Via Social Media?
From afar, it may seem like a tedious chore but in reality, it’s very easy to engage with customers via social media platforms.
You don’t necessarily have to send messages to them, simple tasks such as replying to comments on your posts are enough to spur engagement with potential customers.
The replies shouldn’t only be too positive comments but also negative comments.
Unknown to most brands is that customer complaints or rather negative reviews are low hanging fruits that you can leverage to generate sales.
Keenly look at the negative reviews to understand the root cause of the problem and then develop ways of resolving the problem.
For example, if a client complains about a product is poor quality or not as per their expectations, you can decide to give them a full refund or ship a new product at no extra cost.
When doing social media marketing, consistency is key. The mantra out of mind out of sight makes sense in social medial marketing.
You need to actively post fresh and engaging content on all the platforms that you use to grasp the target audience’s attention and promote brand awareness efforts.
Unlike before, there are tools that you can use to schedule posts to free up your schedule. That way, the tweets or Facebook posts will go live at specific times of the day. You don’t have to login into the accounts to publish the posts.
Even though there are chatbots that you can use to respond to the comments and replies, it’s advisable to spend one or two hours of the day responding to the comments.
Personalised comments are more effective in encouraging customers to visit the website or take the desired action than automated replies.
Use Video as a Marketing Tool
Video marketing is the new way of connecting with customers. The internet is filled with a ton of text content that in one way or another markets products and services. Unfortunately, a majority of the customers don’t read the text.
As mentioned in the previous article, the human brain is wired to process visuals faster and more efficiently than text.
Video is more relatable to modern-day customers than blocks of text that highlight details of a product or service.
With millions of people using their mobile devices not only for communication but also for socialising and shopping, video is one of the best ways of engaging with customers.
Master video storytelling to capture the hearts and minds of the target customers.
For example, instead of a generic video review of a product or service, create an enticing video that details the process of creating the product and what inspired you to create it.
Go the extra mile and post-behind-the-scenes video to help the target audience understand the great lengths you go to ensure that the final product is perfect.
Earlier on, we discussed the need to segment the customers into different groups based on their interests, age, and other factors. Create custom videos for each group based on the background information that you have about them.
Concisely, relatable videos are more effective in generating organic traffic to your website and sales than generic videos that don’t focus on a particular group.
How to Measure Customer Engagement?
When doing any form of digital marketing, it’s imperative to continuously monitor the performance of the campaign to know if you are headed in the right direction.
The same case applies to customer engagement. Measuring it will help you to know how the target audience prefers to be communicated thereby saving you time and money that would have been spent on the wrong strategies.
Here are three primary metrics used to measure customer engagement. They all give an accurate indication of the target customer’s interest in your brand based on actual behaviours or actions they take on your website.
- Conversion Rate: This is one of the strongest metrics as it shows the number of customers who purchase your product or service after coming across an ad on social media or any other online platform. A high conversion rate means that the customer engagement strategies are working. If not, you need to revise the strategies to better connect with the customers.
- Time Spent on Page: Yes, having massive organic traffic is great but if the customers leave your website shortly after they land, it means there is a major issue that needs to be resolved. The more time a potential customer spends on your website, the more chances you will get to convince them to buy.
Pages that customers frequently visit and spend more time on should be optimised to increase their conversion rate. On the other hand, the less frequented pages should be improved to better relate with the customers.
- A number of people who watch the entire video: By now, you already know the power of video marketing. It’s one of the superior ways of engaging with customers and knowing the number of people who watch the entire video will help you gauge the relevance of the content. A high video completion rate is a clear indication that the message is right and relates to the customers.
MediaOne Marketing is best known for offering quality digital marketing services across the globe. Get in touch with us today for custom ways of connecting with the target audience today. We look forward to being at your service.