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Eleven Proven Ways to LOSE Your Audience!

Keeping your audience engaged can be a MAJOR challenge.

If they’re not actively watching and listening they will never GET IT! 

GETTING IT! is the goal of all communication: Verbal – Written – Visual

  1. They may not agree with everything you say.

  2. The may not agree with anything you say.

  3. However, if they don’t GET IT!, you can’t have a conversation going forward.

Audiences have a very short attention span.

  1. That’s one of the reasons TED Talks are eighteen minutes or less.

  2. It’s why the last time Apple introduced new iPhones, each speaker was given ten minutes to talk.

  3. It is why it is important to learn techniques to keep their attention on you, the speaker!

Here are Eleven Proven Ways to LOSE your audience!

  1. Let the emcee write your Introduction.

  2. They will probably grab a bio of yours off the internet .

  3. It is unlikely it has anything to do with your presentation.

  4. No one cares where you went to school, how many pets you have or what your favorite vacation spots are.

  5. The Introduction should answer three questions.

  6. WHY this topic?

  7. WHY this subject?

  8. WHY now?

  9. Open with a joke, any joke, that has nothing to do with your topic.

  10. This is similar to having an Introduction not related to your speech.

  11. If you use humor it must be topic related.

  12. Stand behind the lectern, placing your hands on either side of it except when turning the pages of your speech.

  13. Non-verbal communication trumps verbal communication.

  14. A lectern forms a physical and emotional barrier between you and the audience.

  15. Being in that position makes you little more than a “talking head.”

  16. Gestures, like facial expressions, and body movements help convey your message.

  17. Read your speech in monotone and rarely look up from the lectern.

  18. Reading word for word will come across as – reading it! 

  19. B-o-r-i-n-g!

  20. A good presentation is conversational in its delivery.

  21. Insert buzz words, techno-speak, and industry specific acronyms into your talk.

  22. Doing that will immediately confuse your audience.

  23. Clean and simple language rules! 

  24. They’ll quickly turn you off if you try to impress them with words and terms they don’t know.

  25. No one likes to feel stupid!

  26. Use slides with lots of bullet points.

  27. People don’t come to read your presentation.

  28. You are reading one bullet point and the audience is ahead reading a different one.

  29. There is a disconnect between you and them when this takes place.

  30. Bullet points kill – Kill the bullet points!

  31. Use high quality, universally understood images. 

  32. You provide the text with your voice.

  33. Use many different fonts, font colors, and different slide transitions.

  34. Those will definitely distract folks from your message.

  35. Plain and simple rules!

  36. Think Zen-like.

  37. Use a corporate template for each slide and include your contact information.

  38. Clutter! – Clutter! – Clutter!

  39. All that information distracts your recipients from your message.

  40. Plain and simple slide backgrounds are best.

  41. If all that contact information is missing, but you are really good, they will seek you out!

  42. Always keep a slide on the screen.

  43. We are drawn to the light and folks will be looking at the screen, not you.

  44. Since non-verbal communication trumps verbal communication, this suggestion is horrible!

  45. Make the slide go dark and the audience will look at you!

  46. This is where you want them to look.

  47. Wear loud clothing and lots of shiny jewelry.

  48. Wild patterns and shiny bling will grab attention.

  49. However, they might remember your attire but have trouble recalling your message.

  50. Think of dressing more like Steve Jobs or Mark Zuckerberg. 

  51. Take any and all questions from the audience throughout your presentation.

  52. Good Luck when they ask question about something you’ll cover much later in the talk.

  53. Have an up-front agreement on when you’ll be taking questions.

  54. As the speaker, you need to control this.

Don’t do these eleven things to lose your audience and I guarantee your next presentation will be absolutely, positively – NO SWEAT!


Write a Book!

About the Author Fred E. Miller is a speaker, an international coach, and the author of the books, “NO SWEAT Public Speaking!” and“NO SWEAT Elevator Speech!”

Businesses, Individuals, and Organizations hire him because they want to improve their Networking, Public Speaking, and Presentation Skills.

They do this because they know: Speaking Opportunities are Business, Career, and Leadership Opportunities.

They also know: We perceive really great speakers to be Experts, and we like to work with Experts.

He shows them how to: Develop, Practice, and Deliver ‘Knock Your Socks Off Presentations!’ with – NO SWEAT!


  1. Keynote Speaker

  2. Workshop Facilitator

  3. Breakout Sessions

  4. Personal and Group Public Speaking and Presentation Coaching


  1. Lessening The Fear of Public Speaking with – NO SWEAT!

  2. Crafting Your Elevator Speech, Floor by Floor with – NO SWEAT!

  3. Speaking Opportunities are Business, Career, and Leadership Opportunities.

  4. We are All Self-Employed!


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