When Is A Presentation Not A Presentation?

Thursday, October 3rd, 2013 by Simon Morton

The quick response is ‘when there are no slides’ but we don’t agree with that at all. We’ve been banging on about the power of stories for a while now but this week gave us an unexpected and, if we’re honest, unwanted opportunity to prove our point.

Monday’s Autumn sales webinar was planned with the level of pernickety perfectionism that we’re (in)famous for here at Eyeful. We’d given the whole thing the same love and attention we give to customer projects, identifying key messages, building our storyflow then developing and scripting the story itself before creating the slides that bought the visual element to life.

Then just as our eager attendees were logging in for some sales enlightenment, the tech gremlins stuck – we could see our lovely slides but our audience couldn’t, and no amount of frantic button pressing at our end made the slightest bit of difference.

Many great presenters have faced similar issues and our intrepid MD Simon Morton wasn’t about to let this hiccup derail the whole enterprise, after all, if we’re right and the story is more important than the slides, it wouldn’t matter at all.

Or would it??

As someone who regularly gets sucked into the murky world of metrics I’m rarely impressed with statistics but here’s one that I’m very proud to share: only 2 attendees left the webinar when it became apparent that we were unable to placate the gremlins.

Any presenter would consider that a successful event, but when it comes to demonstrating the importance of stories it’s a resounding endorsement of our belief in the concept of ‘Stories Not Slides’.

Just to put the icing on the cake of this particular bout of smugness, the webinar was repeated later in the day and the tech gremlins were nowhere to be seen, yet all the complimentary emails received at Eyeful Towers were from attendees of the earlier session…..

And if that’s not food for thought on how a presentation can engage an audience through strength of story alone, I don’t know what is.

For the sceptics amongst you, here is the webinar in full.

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