I once heard a woman decides if she is going to date a man in the first 7 seconds of meeting him. Part of that evaluation is how his shoes look. Therefore, in addition to everything else, make sure you’re wearing the right shoes to impress her.
That same analysis is true for your speech introduction. Your audience will determine in the first 30 seconds if they are going to listen to your speech or work on their grocery list. It doesn’t matter how long your speech is, you only have 30 seconds to impress. But you have A LOT of valuable data to present. How do you do impress them?
- Surprise! – Do or say something that is going to wonderfully surprise them. Don’t scare them with something they wish they could forget (e.g. – wolves dragging band members away – see the video). Your goal is to make them want to stay.
- Begin with a RELEVANT story – This is not the time to tell them about the girl who wouldn’t go out with you. What CRAZY thing did Dr. Petterson do with those bean burritos and how does it relate to the results? Include pictures for emphasis.
- Be direct – Some audiences don’t want cute stories and anecdotes. Cut to the chase and move on. Show that you respect their time.
One more thing: Don’t use humor if you’re not funny. If you don’t know if you are funny, ask a true friend. They’ll tell you the truth.
Remember: you have 30 seconds to capture your audience’s attention. At least it’s more than 7 seconds.
And wear your best shoes. It shows that you pay attention to details.
Scientifically Speaking, of course.