A Golden Rule Of Persuading Your Presentation Audience To Do Anything

The ultimate goal of a persuasive presentation is, you guessed it, to persuade your audience to do something.

It sounds easy in theory, but the truth is a lot of presenters fail to convince their audience to do, well, anything.

In fact, persuasive presenters often end up with an audience that isn’t even paying attention to a word they’re saying.

Luckily there is a simple solution to both keep an audience engaged, and promote the idea of taking action.

Introducing the AIDA Technique

AIDA is a four-stage marketing model, which stands for:

  • Attention
  • Interest
  • Desire
  • Action

The whole idea of the AIDA technique is to grab the attention of your audience and take them on an emotional roller coaster until they’re influenced enough to take action. AIDA is particularly useful because every step builds on the previous one.

Take note; the AIDA technique is most useful when you know how to tap into your audience’s emotions. Emotions are pretty damn powerful and can influence your audience to do loads of things. Go ahead and find out more about emotions in presentations right here.

Let’s get into the nitty-gritty.

Stage One: The Attention Phase

This is pretty much the setup phase, and there are two things you have to do here.

First thing’s first, introduce the problem and relate that same problem to your audience. There are many ways to do this. Some examples are:

  • “How many of you have ever experienced this?”
  • “80% of the national population is going through this problem; that means 8 in 10 people in this room are facing this issue every single day.”
  • “This is a problem we’re all aware of, but forget us, what about our families? What about our children?”

Once you’ve established how the problem impacts the audience, they’re already looking for a solution (spoiler alert: that’s the second thing you have to do).

It is your job to introduce that solution.

That solution could be anything: a product or service you’re selling, or a neat trick you found on YouTube that you want your audience to do. It doesn’t matter. What you want to make sure you’re doing is showing your audience that their problems can be solved with something you’re providing.

Stage Two: The Interest Phase

You lured your audience in.

This is where you have to get creative.

Start leveraging what you have to offer with their needs. It’s important you establish that balance because this presentation isn’t about you, it’s about your audience and how you’re correlating your content to their interests.

Stage Three: The Desire Phase

Your audience is hooked, and you leveraged your solution with their needs. Great job.

Now, get personal.

You want your audience to realize that you have the best damn solution to their problems.

You have to make every attempt to transform something they may want, to something they need to have.

For example, you could explain how your solution worked for other people in similar situations. You can also highlight the advantages of your solution in this phase.

Stage Four: The Action Phase

Here. We. Go.

After you’ve convinced your audience that your solution is something they need to do have, you have to persuade them to take action.

The idea here is to cause a sense of urgency to make your audience follow through with your solution as soon as possible.

A useful technique I use is to give my audience a call-to-action that is straight to the point and is insanely dramatic.

One time, I said “start doing [this] the second my mouth stops moving,” and then ended my presentation right there. It worked extremely well.

Wrapping up

The AIDA technique is something I’ve used for years, and in my experience, it’s particularly effective when I find a way to tap into my audience’s emotions.

So, the next time you have to be persuasive with your content, try it out and let me know what your results are like. I’d love to feature you in a future blog post.

Yousef "Yoyo" Abu Ghaidah

Yousef "Yoyo" Abu Ghaidah

Yousef "Yoyo" Abu Ghaidah is a PowerPoint ninja that founded Slide Cow, a learning platform for all things PowerPoint, presentations and public speaking. When he's not designing slides or giving presentations, he's on another coffee run.
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