Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Public Speaking: Room Blackouts

If you want to make a spectacular impression on a low budget, room blackouts are a great technique.

I use them in two ways.
1. If I want the audience to concentrate on a recorded audio tape and
2. when I want an awesome closing.

Let's say I wanted the audience to listen to a recording of the speech where John Fitzgerald Kennedy said "Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country." Or maybe the "I have a dream" speech by Martin Luther King would be appropriate. I would gradually bring the lights down as I was introducing the audio clips. I would either project a picture of JFK, or MLK if I had the capability, or I would totally darken the room (except for the red exit signs, or whatever lights are mandatory for emergencies).

When you take away the visual clues (or distractions) the audience has, you help them totally focus on the audio.

When I'm doing a rip roaring presentation that demands a spectacular close, this is what I do. (Note: I DON'T do this if I'm planning a table rush to buy my products.)

I hand out (usually you need helpers to do this quickly) some sort of chemical glow product. I give the audience instructions on what we're going to do. I tell the audience to stand up and I get them all swaying back and forth in unison while they're holding they glow sticks over their heads. Then I bring the lights down and play some singalong song or Karoke song where I have made up custom words for their group.

This is one heck of a closing! When the song is finished I say "thank you for having me." The lights start to come up while they are applauding and I accidentally on purpose get a standing ovation. hahahhaha

Do you want more?

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