How can you use your words to grab the attention of your audience right away? The very first words out of your mouth are incredibly important. Let’s explore five techniques that explode the power of what we call “the cold open”. Further, click here to read sample opening speech.
In the cold open you simply begin by beginning, there’s no hamming, there’s no hueing, you don’t start by saying welcome or thank you or any tried polite way that almost guaranties you lose your audience in seconds. What you should do instance?
Lets’ take a look at five cold opening techniques.
Five Strong Openings for Presentation or Speech
1. Ask an Open-Ended Question
I often like to start a presentation by asking an open-ended question. In this article for instance, I started how can you use your word to grab the attention of your audience right away. This question creates a many mystery, it opens a knowledge gape and makes the audience wonder about how you will close it.
Now notice I didn’t ask a Yes or No question, for instance I didn’t ask “can you use your words to grab the attention of your audience right away.” A close ended question like that doesn’t create any mystery. The audience can either answer Yes or No, inside their heads and quit paying attention.
Instead use an open-ended question to create a knowledge gape that you later close in your presentation.
2. Start With a Story
You can effectively start a presentation with a story or an anecdote that illustrates the key point of your presentation. Starting with a story service to purposes:
1.People really pay attention whenever someone begins to tell a story.
2. Further, a well told story often creates a sense of mystery. Your audience will wonder how the content of your presentation will relate to your opening story.
3. A bold Statement
You can start your presentation or speech with a bold statement. Most of good speakers start their presentation with bold statements and it signals confidence, and it also primes the audience to expect to hear how will you backing up such a strong assertion.
4. Imagine Something
Tell your audience to imagine something. Tell them to think of a situation, pretend to be somewhere, or imagine someone, for instance, imagine that you are in an auditorium filled with hundreds of people and waiting to hear your first words. Almost instantly, the imagination open makes your audience a part of your presentation. They are actively engaging with the content of your speech, because they are actually putting themselves in it. And let’s face it, the moment somebody tells you to imagine something, it’s almost impossible not to.
5. A Quote or a Fact
You can start with hard evidence, usually in the form of a quote or documented fact. Starting with hard evidence is a risky reproach then the other four cold opening techniques. The dangerous of starting with a quote is that many times it comes across is tired or hackneyed. If you decide to start with a quote, make sure the content context and author of a credibility to your presentation.
In a similar vein, starting with a documented fact can also be risky, an obvious fact may not be enough to grab the attention of audience. If you are starting your presentation with a fact, make sure it’s surprising or unexpected fact that defies come a knowledge.
Your fact must have enough of shock value to ensure a powerful statement. When you work on developing your next speech or presentation try these five cold openings. Sit down, and write a cold open for the same speech that uses each of these five approaches.
Of course, you can only use one cold open technique in your final presentation, but you should choose the technique you like the best and is a strong opening for your speech or presentation.