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Nail the Opener of your Presentation

A great presentation starts with nailing the opener

Without doubt the most common piece of advice on giving a presentation or any other kind of public speaking event, is Nail. The. Opener.


The beginning or introduction to your presentation is essential. But not just a strong start, you need to really NAIL it. And the best way to nail the opener is with a story, preferably something personal, something that means something to you, so they can hear that you mean it. There is genuine feeling in what you are saying. You're authentic. People relate to the human story, not the expert. People buy people before they buy their expertise.


The second way to build an opener is with questions that make the audience think and engage with your topic. But it's essential to avoid confusing your audience. If you're going to ask several questions, in order to keep the audience focused on your BIG IDEA, the answers to those questions needs to be the same thing every time. It's too easy to ask lots of big open questions and have the audience thinking ten different things at once.


Another way to nail the opener is with a fact or figure hat will grab their attention because it's so difficult for them to wrap their heads around. Now you have their attention, you might build to a personal story.


A powerful way to engage the audience is to make them IMAGINE. Create pictures in the mind of the audience. Those pictures become emotionally powerful ways to draw in the audience. There is literally no topic or subject that you can't use this word to help bridge the gap between speaker and audience.

So, there's FOUR big ways to grab attention and NAIL. THE. OPENER.

The Very Best

Mark Westbrook

Public Speaking Coach


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