How is making a presentation different when online?

In the age of remote work, online meetings have become the norm. And just like with in-person presentations, making an effective presentation during an online meeting is crucial to getting your point across and achieving your goals. Whether you’re presenting to colleagues, clients, or stakeholders, these tips will help you create and deliver a compelling online presentation.

  1. Prepare thoroughly

The key to a successful online presentation is preparation. Before the meeting, make sure you have a clear understanding of what you want to achieve and who your audience is. Research your topic, gather data, and create a clear and concise outline of your presentation. Practice your presentation several times, and make sure your slides are error-free and visually appealing.

  1. Use engaging visuals

More so than in face to face presentation, visual aids are an important way to keep your audience engaged and help them retain information. When creating your slides, use visuals such as graphs, charts, images, and videos to illustrate your points. Keep your slides simple and avoid clutter. Use large fonts and high-contrast colours to ensure your audience can read your slides easily.

  1. Keep it short and sweet

Online meetings can be tiring, and attention spans can be short. Keep your presentation short and to the point. Avoid using long, complex sentences and technical jargon. Use simple language and break up your presentation into smaller, manageable sections.  Use these natural breaks to facilitate point four.

  1. Engage your audience

Online presentations can be more challenging than in-person presentations when it comes to engaging your audience. Make sure to ask questions and encourage participation. Use polls, surveys, and chat functions to involve your audience and get their feedback. This will help to keep them engaged and interested in your presentation.

  1. Speak clearly and confidently

When presenting online, it’s important to speak clearly and confidently. Make sure your audio is working properly and test it before the meeting. Speak slowly and use a conversational tone. Avoid using filler words such as “um” and “ah,” and make eye contact with your camera.

  1. Pay attention to your body language

Even though you’re not in the same room as your audience, your body language is still important. Sit up straight, smile, and use hand gestures to emphasise your points. Make sure you’re looking directly at the camera and avoid looking down at your notes or slides.  If you can, consider using an external cam rather than the one built into your laptop.  Positioned slightly further away form you, it can communicate your whole upper body language, instead of just your face.  This makes a huge difference to the audience when watching a presentation online.  

  1. Follow up after the presentation

After the presentation, make sure to follow up with your audience. Send a thank-you email, and provide any additional information or resources they may need. This will help to solidify your relationship with your audience and ensure that your presentation was a success.

In conclusion, making an effective presentation during an online meeting requires preparation, engaging visuals, brevity, audience engagement, clear and confident speaking, attention to body language, and a follow-up. By following these tips, you can create a successful online presentation that achieves your goals and impresses your audience.