How to Make a Presentation Funny (The Ultimate Guide + Image Quotes)

Few people are good at public speaking. You could even argue that almost everyone needs some practice, and preferably good guidance, before they can learn to remain calm in a crowded room. Having all eyes on you is an unsettling experience that takes some getting used to. Even if you are able to control your stage fright and stay focused, this does not guarantee that your presentation will not put people to sleep. This is usually the case with long presentations on a very dull subject, with the presenter speaking monotonously and dimming the lights to play a PowerPoint presentation.

To develop the necessary skills, you must put in the necessary effort

If you want to be remembered and actually get people engaged, make your presentation enjoyable and fun without coming across as corny or desperate to please. I know it doesn't sound like it should be that simple! A good presentation at a promotional event or to a key client can be a game changer for your company, so it's easy to become stressed out and underperform. Fortunately, giving an interesting lecture can be practiced and perfected. There is a lot of advice available on the subject, but let's focus on the most important aspects of giving a memorable and enjoyable presentation.

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1. Keep your presentation brief and to the point

Long, meandering speeches tend to lose the audience pretty quickly, and the rest of the time it's just a test of endurance for the few bravest listeners. Not only will people's attention begin to wane after sitting and listening to you speak for 30 minutes, but you also risk watering down your core ideas and leaving your audience with few key phrases and important bits of information to remember. Famous speakers throughout history have understood the value of condensing information by using well-thought-out sentences and short phrases packed with meaning.

JFK's famous quote, “It's not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country,” says so much in so few words and gets the audience thinking. The ancient Spartans, for example, were known for their quick, dry wit, frequently demolish their opponents' arguments with a single word or phrase. When preparing your presentation, you'll want to channel that ancient spirit and be as concise as possible.

2. Begin with a good ice breaker

You are unfamiliar to the audience at first. There is no rapport, no trust, and the environment is fairly neutral. Even if some of the people there know you personally, the idea of you giving a speech as an authority on a particular subject will be foreign to them. The best way to encourage a warm and friendly atmosphere is to elicit an emotional response from the audience right away. It doesn't matter what emotion you're experiencing; all you need to do is connect with them on a more personal level. It could be shock, curiosity, laughter, knowing smirks, nervousness, or anything else that gets them out of their initial state of indifference. There are various types of effective icebreakers, but the most effective ones generally employ one of the following strategies:

pricking at their heartstrings
Making a grandiose statement
relating an amusing and relevant anecdote
Making analogies or using metaphors
You can open with a short childhood story that taught you a lesson, quote a famous person and elaborate on it from personal experience, use an inspirational anecdote, or hit them with a bit of nostalgia. Just remember to keep it brief and to move on once you've elicited a response.

3. Keep it brief and to the point

After you've finished warming up the audience, you can ease them into the key concepts and ideas you'll be presenting. Continue to use the same presentation style throughout. You can't just launch into a boring monologue if you started off ironically and with dry wit. If you started with a bang, telling a couple of great little jokes and getting the crowd riled up, you must keep them happy by throwing in little jokes here and there and being generally positive and energetic throughout the presentation. You need a structure that you will not deviate from at any point. A good game plan includes several key points that must be addressed quickly. This entails proceeding logically from one point to another, reaching a sound conclusion, and emphasizing key information.

4. Include a healthy dose of levity

Some of the best speeches and presentations in the world, heard and seen by millions, contain a lot of humor. A great speaker will use natural charisma, humor, and beautiful language to convey their points and get the audience excited about what they are saying, regardless of the subject. Barrack Obama's comment about the government building Iron Man is a great example of building rapport with the audience through the use of humor.

It's silly and fun, and it's exactly what you wouldn't expect from a man in a position of power speaking in such a serious setting – and that's why it works. The harder your jokes will hit, the more serious the situation and the greater the emphasis on proper social behavior.

5. Instead of ranting, try telling a story

Some people can do all of the above correctly and still manage to turn their brief and entertaining presentation into a jumbled mess of information. You don't want your speech to come across as if you threw a bunch of information in a blender in no particular order. Create a strong structure to avoid rambling. Begin with an icebreaker, then briefly introduce the core concepts and your goals, expand on the various points in more detail, draw logical conclusions, and leave your audience with a clear takeaway message. You want to move smoothly from one section to the next, as if you were telling a long story chapter by chapter.

6. Rehearse your delivery

Standing in front of a mirror and practicing a speech or presentation is an age-old technique as old as mirrors – or, come to think of it, as old as human speech, because you can see yourself reflected in any clear and calm body of water – and it is tried and true. The theory is extremely simple, but the real challenge is putting in the effort on a daily basis. Work on your posture, tone of voice, accent, sentence pauses, and facial expressions. The most important thing is to speak slowly and loudly enough to be clearly heard and understood. Many famous speakers, including Demosthenes and King George VI, worked hard to overcome speech impediments.

7. Move around and make use of your hands

Although being jittery, moving around erratically, not knowing what to do with your hands, and making fast movements will not instill confidence in your project, standing still can be just as bad. When speaking, don't be afraid to use your arms and hands; it makes you appear more passionate and confident. The same is true for moving around and taking up space. Slower, calculated, and deliberate movements are preferable. You want your movements to appear powerful while also being effortless. This is something that can be accomplished with practice.

8. Make the audience relate to you in order to engage them

You may occasionally lose the audience in techno-babble, numbers, graphs, and abstract ideas. At that point, it's critical to entice them back in with some good old-fashioned storytelling. Make analogies to everyday occurrences that most people are well-versed in. By making things appear simple, you will not only help your audience understand the subject better by allowing them to visualize the information more clearly, but you will also establish a connection between you. After all, you're all just regular people with similar experiences who happen to be playing different roles right now.

9. Include amusing images in your slides

Although slides are not always necessary, it is best to liven them up if you do need them to make your point and present your information more effectively. Facts aren't always black and white, and your presentation should reflect this. Colorize the information, make it stand out, and use an interesting animation to transition from slide to slide. You can use the slides to add more levity, both in terms of text and images. An image used to elicit a positive response must be amusing in the context of what you're discussing. For example, if you're talking about authority, an image of Eric Cartman from South Park in a police uniform demanding that you respect his “authoritah” is a fun way to lighten the mood.

10. Conclude on a more solemn note

After all is said and done, you want the audience to remember the key concepts and continue to think about what you said after the presentation is over. This is why you should allow things to settle naturally before concluding with an important idea, quote, or even a question. Plant a seed in their minds and get them to think. Let us look to Patrick Henry for a great way to end a speech: “Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, that it must be purchased at the cost of chains and slavery?” Almighty God, forbid it! I don't know what path others will take, but give me liberty or give me death.”

As you can see, there is a lot to learn about giving a good presentation that is both memorable and enjoyable. Make a point of constantly honing your skills and following in the footsteps of great orators.

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