This article shares the first of eight show biz based entertainment techniques that will help you deliver more engaging presentations.
In the prior article in this series, Eight entertainment techniques for more engaging presentations, we discovered that the entertainment industry knows how to connect with its audience.
Entertainment industry technique one: Emotion Creates Memory
Popular movies, TV shows and other entertainments reach us emotionally. We tear up when the hero suffers loss, we get anxious when the hero is in danger, and we cheer when the hero triumph. Hollywood knows this. A story without emotion is destined for box office failure.
One excellent example is the 1997 blockbuster, Titanic. It’s no mystery how the story goes – the ship sinks. And yet, the movie was box office gold. People attended it repeatedly. Although some of this attendance can be explained by special effects, they those effects, although essential, were not at the heart of the movie’s appeal. The love story between Jack and Rose, and the sacrifices that love required, was what mattered to the viewers. It was that emotion that made the movie such a titanic hit.
Emotional moments create memory. The human brain is hard-wired to remember them. Any of us who remember the day our child was born, the day we received that desired promotion, or the day that a national tragedy happened has experienced the permanence of emotion.
Many presentations do not, unfortunately, focus on emotion. The needs of leadership and the organization paying for the content to be delivered are front and center. The emotional needs of the learner can be neglected. We present the corporate objectives as if these organizational needs will matter to the learner. Sometimes we get lucky. More often, we do not.
A financial software training program, for example, might list the objectives as learning to use the software successfully. It most likely will ignore the underlying emotional value the software will deliver to the learner. If the software will ensure that they employee is paid properly, the real emotional value may be having the money to enjoy life.
Where an orientation program may focus on facts and specifics required by the organization, the real emotional need for an effective orientation might be the employee’s desire to align what they do with their own goals in life.
Find the emotional core of your message that the learners will care about and you will change their behavior.
To reach past this brain panic, create a safe, positive, enjoyable, emotional environment. Where many things create negative emotion, entertainment is uniquely designed to create positive emotion. Facts can reach learners intellectually but don’t often change behavior anyway. Where logic proves, emotion moves when you Evoke Emotion!
In the next article in this series, The second of eight entertainment techniques for more engaging presentations, we will examine ways to turn boring bullet points into a meaningful story.